Quality Improvement in Ambulatory Surgery Centers: A Major National Effort Aimed at Reducing Infections and Other Surgical Complications

Kristina K. Davis, Vrinda Mahishi, Robbie Singal, Richard D. Urman, Melissa A. Miller, Marcia Cooke, William R. Berry


Background: Surgical volume has shifted significantly from inpatient to outpatient settings, including free-standing ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs). Approaches to quality improvement (QI) and surveillance used in hospitals are not always appropriate to the ambulatory setting.

Methods: We recruited 665 ASCs in 47 US states to participate in an intervention to improve safe practice through implementation of a surgical safety checklist and infection control practices. Areas for partner contribution included recruitment, project development, content development and delivery, clinical subject matter expertise, data analysis, and facility coaching.

Results: Barriers to implementation and data collection were encountered during the project, requiring revisions to the implementation plan. Project activities, such as facility recruitment, data measurement, and implementation strategies were modified to meet ASC-specific needs. Several ASC-specific tools were designed.

Conclusions: The increasing number of patients being cared for in ASCs makes it essential to better understand how to implement quality improvement projects in that environment. Tailoring interventions to the ASC’s unique needs is necessary.

J Clin Med Res. 2019;11(1):7-14
doi: https://doi.org/10.14740/jocmr3603w



Checklist; Infection control; Quality improvement; Ambulatory surgery center; Safety; Implementation

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