Quality and Safety
What does quality mean?
You know when you receive quality care. But when hospitals talk about quality, it has a very specific meaning. In the hospital world, quality refers to “clinical outcomes” or results. When we talk about quality, we are talking about things we can do that improve our patients’ outcomes.
How we achieve quality
While hospital quality measurements can be complicated, it is important to know how your hospital measures up. All together, these quality measurements paint a picture of the kind of care you can expect to receive while you are in the hospital. You can be certain that in addition to expert physicians and highly skilled staff, you will have access to the most current treatments, procedures, and medications available. You can feel confident in the kind of care you will receive in a hospital that receives high quality ratings year after year like HackensackUMC.
Some questions you can ask about quality:
If you are planning or preparing to have surgery or another procedure:
• How many times have you done this procedure?
• How often is this procedure done in this hospital?
• Does this facility follow evidence-based processes of care?
• Do you report your results to CMS (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services)?
• How do your results compare with national averages?
• What are the infection rates for this procedure in the last 2 years?
• Have the infection rates gone up or down in the last 6 months?
The answers to these questions will give you a good idea about the quality of your hospital and your individual doctor’s performance. Remember—it is a good idea to see a doctor who has lots of experience with your particular problem.
How we are improving quality every day
When we talk about improving quality, we are talking about the things we do that make a medical difference in the lives of our patients at the Heart & Vascular Hospital. There are certain key quality measurements that the government and CMS require us to track. But we go far beyond that. Regular team meetings with people from many different departments look at various aspects of our program and look for opportunities to improve. This kind of “cross-functional” collaboration has resulted in numerous quality and service improvements. We also follow patients long after their discharge to make sure that their outstanding outcomes are lasting ones. And we encourage patient feedback and use it to improve the quality of our services, enhance the patient experience, and expand the breadth of what we offer to our patients so we can make sure we are meeting their needs.
You can help improve quality
Quality improvement is an ongoing process, and you can play a part. It’s our job to keep you safe, but you can take an active role by following these 5 steps:
1. If you think something is wrong, say so.
2. If you are not sure about anything, ask questions. If you don’t understand the answer, keep asking.
3. Make sure you understand what will happen if you need surgery.
Talk to all your doctors—the surgeon, anesthesiologist, nurses. Tell them about any
allergies or any concerns you have.
4. Before you go for your procedure, make sure the nurses and staff have the
right information about you and the procedure.
5. Let your doctor or nurse know if you are worried about falling.
Awards and recognition matter. To us, they mean that we are accomplishing our goals for quality and safety. To you,
all these awards mean that you can feel sure that you are getting the very best health care that is available in the
New York-New Jersey metropolitan area. And when you are talking about your heart, nothing could be more important.
The Heart & Vascular Hospital has achieved an impressive list of distinctions. And we keep doing it year after year. Repetition means you can feel confident that we are meeting—and exceeding—the very highest standards for excellence in medicine.
Nationally recognized as a leader in healthcare
U.S. News & World Report 2014-2015 listings
—HUMC ranked #1 in New Jersey
—HUMC ranked #3 in the New York metro area
—Heart & Vascular Hospital ranked #32 nationally
Among the things highlighted by U.S. News & World Report were our use of advanced technologies, patient safety, Nurse Magnet recognition, and patient volume. (The higher the volume, the more experienced your doctors are.)
Talk to a doctor about your symptoms or for more information
Schedule an appointment today by calling 855.424.WELL (9355)