Mahaska Health Partnership Receives Joint Commission Accreditation
Through demonstration of compliance with The Joint Commission’s national standards for healthcare quality and safety, the entities of Mahaska Health Partnership (MHP), have again earned The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval.
MHP voluntarily takes part in the accreditation process every three years to assure the care the health system is providing is the best it can be, with an emphasis on continuous improvement and delivery of safe, high quality care. Founded in 1951, The Joint Commission is dedicated to continuously improving the safety and quality of the nation's healthcare. The Joint Commission’s unannounced on-site review of the quality and safety of care being provided at MHP occurred in October of 2012.
According to MHP CEO Jay Christensen, The Joint Commission is the industry leader and symbolizes excellence, experience and professionalism. “By participating in the Joint Commission’s accreditation process, we are setting a high standard of care,” Christensen said. “The standards are tough, as expected, but we have exceptional staff and providers who are dedicated to outstanding patient care.”
Christensen said accreditation is an independent way to evaluate quality and safety in an organization. “It is an audit of the actual delivery of critical services and not just a review of policies,” Christensen explained. “Accreditation is a continuous process, providing insight into our daily operations and systems. The unannounced survey is a testament to our commitment to these high standards of care each and every day.”
The Joint Commission uses tracer methodology, where surveyors select a patient and use that individual’s record as a roadmap to move through an organization. Along the way, they assess and evaluate MHP’s compliance with evidence-based standards. Surveyors retrace the specific experiences of an individual by observing and talking to staff in areas where the patient received care. As surveyors follow the course of the patient’s treatment, they assess the healthcare organization’s compliance with Joint Commission standards.
“Our staff was vital to the success of the on-site survey because the tracer methodology focuses on the direct care of the patient,” Christensen said. “The community should be proud that MHP is focusing on continuously raising quality and safety to higher levels.”
Separate surveys were performed for the Critical Access Hospital, Home Health and Hospice Services, Behavioral Health Services and Building and Environment of Care. Christensen said surveyors interviewed staff, patients and family members, observed direct patient care, toured patient care departments, traveled on home care visits, provided hands-on validation and watched crucial processes such as sterilization of medical equipment.