EMMC is One of Four Local Hospitals Selected to Participate in National Quality Improvement Collabor


Quality Counts, an organization committed to working together across organizations and across communities to improve healthcare systems and outcomes with the people of Maine, announced on Wednesday, March 11 that EMMC, along with Redington-Fairview General Hospital, St. Mary's Medical Center and Southern Maine Medical Center, have been selected by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to participate in a new effort to improve the quality of care in hospitals. The program will help nurses and other front line staff identify, test and implement changes that will improve the quality and safety of patient care in their medical and surgical units.

The program is part of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's Aligning Forces for Quality initiative, a cornerstone of the Foundation's $300 million commitment to improving quality in specific regions across the United States.
The new nurse-led program is based on successful pilot efforts by the Foundation to transform care at the bedside, by making hospital staff who spend the most time directly caring for patients the key drivers of the quality improvement. Hospitals that have already participated in the program report a cultural shift on their medical-surgical units that has produced better clinical outcomes, more time spent with patients by staff, and lower turnover of nursing jobs.

"We all know firsthand what a critical role our nurses and other front line staff play in ensuring quality care for all of our patients," says Lorraine Rodgerson, RN, vice president of patient care services and chief nursing officer. "Our involvement will enable us to create our own learning laboratory to develop and test innovations."

Led by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Transforming Care at the Bedside Collaborative will be overseen by The Center for Health Care Quality at The George Washington University Medical Center School of Public Health and Health Services, which serves as the national program office for the Aligning Forces for Quality initiative. Technical assistance will be provided by the American Organization of Nurse Executives. The Institute for Healthcare Improvement will convene training workshops for participants. The first cohort will kick-off this month and the second cohort launches fall of 2009.