Pennsylvania success stories

PA Local Success Stories
Quality improvement endeavors can often feel overwhelming, but chances are, you can learn from the experiences that another physician, hospital or nursing home has had in a similar situation. Coupled with support from Quality Insights Quality Innovation Network, learning what has worked for others — and what didn't — is a valuable strategic planning component. 

We encourage you to read the success stories, contact us for more information, and also let us know if you have a Quality Insights' success storyto share.

Campbell & Philbin Medical Associates is a six provider practice that has two locations in Pittsburgh, PA. Lynn Karaffa, Practice Manager, has been working closely with Lisa Sagwitz, Quality Insights Practice Transformation Specialist, to better understand the intricacies of the new Quality Payment Program (QPP).

EDC Logo PictureWhen Robert was told by his doctor in December 2015 that he had pre-diabetes with a high risk of developing type 2 diabetes, he knew he had to make some lifestyle changes. 
Robert met with a registered dietitian from a nearby Shop Rite grocery store. The dietitian looked at his medical history and offered several suggestions in an effort to help. She helped him create meal plans to lower his A1c level and an exercise plan for weight loss. By the end of the year, Robert had lost a considerable amount of weight, and his A1C had improved slightly.

EDC LogoThe Everyone with Diabetes Counts (EDC) team in Pennsylvania recently created a video to illustrate the success of the program at Enon Baptist Church. Watch the video

The practice of Levi Walker, MD, PC, a solo internal medicine practice in Pittsburgh, PA, has been working with Quality Insights for several years on a variety of projects. Danielle Walker heads up the practice’s efforts for meaningful use attesting, PQRS reporting, and now it’s preparation for the Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) in 2017.

The practice of Richard A. Mercurio, M.D. has been working with Quality Insights since 2014, and prior to that, a participating practice with the Pennsylvania Regional Extension Center for Health IT (PA REACH) program, of which Quality Insights was the grantee. Located in Kittanning, PA, this practice has three providers, including a physician, physician assistant, and nurse practitioner.

Western PA Physicians of WMC Physician Practices, LLC has been working with Quality Insights on various projects since the spring of 2015. It is a large multi-specialty group with many physicians and mid-level providers in multiple locations across West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Ohio. Not only can being a multi-state organization pose some interesting quality improvement reporting challenges, but there are several different electronic health record (EHR) systems in use within this healthcare organization which also adds to the complexity. 

Partners in Nephrology and Endocrinology (PINE) is a 26 physician practice with eleven locations throughout the Pittsburgh area. Throughout these multiple office locations, three different electronic health record (EHR) systems are utilized which makes reporting for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) EHR Incentive Programs a bigger challenge. 

One in three American adults — about 80 million people — has high blood pressure, putting them at increased risk for heart attack, heart failure, stroke, kidney failure and other health problems. To combat this major health threat, the American Heart Association (AHA) and the American Medical Association (AMA) launched the Target: Blood Pressure nationwide initiative to help healthcare providers and patients achieve better blood pressure control at the best levels to improve health. Quality Insights is partnering with them to introduce this program to physician practices in our five-state network.

Technology continues to advance at a rapid pace. However, in some places in Pennsylvania, not everyone is able to keep pace with these advances. In the case of Leonida Family Practice, with offices in Mt. Pleasant and Greensburg, PA, this four provider practice (two physicians and two CRNPs) is located in a beautiful but rural, mountainous region. Internet reception can be unreliable and cell signals are spotty in this area. As a result, many of Leonida’s patients do not own cell phones or connect to the internet. This limits the practice’s ability to connect patients with valuable online resources and makes patient portal usage a challenge. It also limits some of the functionality of the practice’s electronic health record (EHR) system and interoperability.

EDC LogoWhen the Everyone with Diabetes Counts (EDC) program conducted a diabetes education class at the Jewish Community Center in York, Pennsylvania earlier this year, a special guest speaker brought valuable insight into foot care for people with diabetes.

Dr. Maria Kasper, a podiatrist with Martin Foot and Ankle in Pennsylvania, spoke to the class about diabetic complications, foot problems and the practice’s own clinical trials with diabetic foot ulcers.

EDC LogoWhile teaching an Everyone with Diabetes Counts (EDC) class earlier this year, Angie Alwood, a Community Health Worker for Quality Insights Quality Innovation Network, found herself in a situation that she felt strongly required her help.

One of the class participants, Patrick, had just left the hospital the day prior to the class. His blood glucose (sugar) level in the hospital had been approximately 700 mg/dL. Prior to coming to the day’s class, his sugar level was 570 mg/dL.

Everyone with Diabetes CountsAlthough class is over for the graduates of the Everyone with Diabetes Counts (EDC) program at Newport Senior Center in Newport, Pennsylvania, they will continue their diabetes self-management journey through a newly-formed support group coordinated by the Center’s manager, Pat Ibaugh. 

EDC LogoA support system – that is what Toni and Gus found when they met at an Everyone with Diabetes Counts (EDC) class earlier this year at the September House Senior Center in York, PA.
Gus and Toni met at the first in a series of six EDC classes at the center. A program of Quality Insights Quality Innovation Network, EDC is a community-based approach that encourages participation and provides a structure to support people with Medicare in their commitment to managing diabetes. Participants learn about diabetes risks, nutrition, weight management, how to properly manage medications and much more.

Thomas Jefferson University Hospital (Jefferson) is an Academic Medical Center, serving patients in Philadelphia and the surrounding communities in the Delaware Valley. Amanda D. Melendez, BS, MPH, CIC, Infection Control Manager, and Sara Townsend, MS-HQS, CIC, Infection Control Practitioner, share their hospital’s journey toward Clostridium difficile infection (CDI) reduction.  

In January 2012, Quality Insights of Pennsylvania invited the Area Agency on Aging, nursing homes, hospitals, home care agencies and hospices in the Lehigh Valley area to an “Improving Care for
Populations and Communities Kick-Off Meeting.” 

As Hickory House Nursing and Rehabilitation Center’s Director of Transitional Care Elaine Doyle embarked on creating a coaching program, she enlisted Quality Insights’ help. 

When Hope Dunkle became the new director of nursing at Guy and Mary Felt Nursing Home, she quickly realized that more than 25 percent of her residents were affected by both pressure ulcers and physical restraints. 

When Quality Insights approached Greensburg Care Center to participate in an initiative to reduce high risk pressure ulcer rates or an initiative to reduce physical restraints, no one expected Greensburg to focus on both areas.

In an effort to align with a 2012 Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services initiative, Kane Regional Centers decided to pilot an antipsychotic drug reduction project in one of its four skilled nursing facilities in the Pittsburgh area. When the Scott Township location was selected as the pilot site, Consultant Pharmacist Kristen Zeigler headed up the project.

Though Moravian Manor was a solid four-star facility on Nursing Home Compare, Director of Nursing Donovan Carper had his eye on achieving a five-star status. Carper felt that highly effective quality oversight was the missing piece of the puzzle.

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