Quality professionals should help board members understand the overall quality goals of the organization and not necessarily get too bogged down in the minutia, according to a Press Ganey white paper on the hospital board’s role in quality improvement.
The report identifies 10 metrics to help boards focus strategies on advancing quality and improving the patient experience.
“The Board needs to have its eyes on the horizon because the senior team often has to focus on the icebergs in the water nearby,” according to one executive quoted in the report.
The paper, “A Proposed Quality Report Card for Boards,” recommends providing board members a list of 10 critical quality metrics. The recommended Board Quality Report Card includes specific metrics in the areas of safety, communication, teamwork, loyalty, and outcomes. (The report is available online at: https://bit.ly/2sremiw.)
The 10 metrics were developed from interviews with CEOs and senior leaders, along with Press Ganey data. The report explains that the metrics provide insight into whether the organization lags its competitors in important dimensions of quality and whether it is improving relative to the needs of patients.
“Boards should be wary of rhetoric that suggests their organization is ‘The Best,’” the report says. “Instead, boards should push the perspective of ‘No matter how good we may be, our duty and our strategy is to try to get better.’ Quality report cards cannot focus purely on process measures (e.g., rate of performance of mammography), which reflect provider reliability in delivering evidence-based medicine, but not meeting patients’ needs. Process measures are important but should generally be used internally by management.”