Memorial Health System received one of the top honors today in a statewide quality excellence competition sponsored by the Illinois Health and Hospital Association (IHA) – the fifth quality award that the health system has received from the association in the last five years.
The IHA Institute for Innovations in Care and Quality’s seventh annual Quality Excellence Achievement Awards were presented during the IHA’s Leadership Summit on Sept. 13 in Lombard.
The IHA recognized one hospital or health system in five separate categories. In the community partnership category, Memorial was recognized for its project, “Integration of Behavioral Health Staff Improves Patient Outcomes 74 Percent and Contributes to 13 Percent Neighborhood Crime Reduction.”
To improve access to behavioral healthcare and appropriate assessments in the nearby Enos Park neighborhood, the health system embedded behavioral health staff into its primary care clinics, local schools and community partner clinics, leading to a 13 percent reduction in police calls to the neighborhood, among other accomplishments.
"This recognition from the Illinois Hospital Association is particularly noteworthy because this project exemplifies the importance of building integrative partnerships across our community as Memorial fulfills its mission to improve the health of the people and communities it serves," said Todd Roberts, vice president of quality and safety and chief quality officer for Memorial Health System.
In July 2016, Memorial Medical Center, the flagship hospital of Memorial Health System, was the first Illinois hospital to receive the American Hospital Association’s top national honor for quality and safety, the AHA-McKesson Quest for Quality Prize.
With this year’s IHA award, Memorial has received a total of five IHA quality awards.
In 2016, Memorial Medical Center was recognized in two categories. The first project reduced the average time for a consult by 86 percent, lowering the patients' length of stay to 5.4 days from 13.5 days and reducing the readmission rate for those patients by 80 percent. The second project reduced the length of stay for chest pain patients in the emergency department to 8.8 hours from 14.6 hours, a 40-percent reduction.
In 2014, Memorial Medical Center received the top honor in the urban hospital category for a project that reduced the number of red blood cell transfusions by nearly a third, which sped treatment delivery, decreased adverse transfusion reactions and produced a $2.8 million cost savings.
In 2013, Memorial Health System received the top quality award in the healthcare system category for work directed at reducing hospital-acquired pressure ulcers.
Fifty-nine healthcare quality improvement projects were submitted by hospitals and health systems in Illinois. Entries were judged by a blind review panel of more than 20 independent quality experts from throughout the United States.