260810 QI goes viral: South Carolina's new STD patient management fast track

Wednesday, October 31, 2012 : 1:10 PM - 1:30 PM

Emily Reineke, MA , Public Health Foundation, Washington, DC
Janet Tapp , Department of Health and Environmental Control, South Carolina, Columbia, SC
Improving the public's health begins with creating a quick and efficient way for people to receive the assistance they need. In a sexually transmitted disease clinic, patients prefer to choose if they need testing only or a full appointment; testing only is known as the Fast Track. Through a partnership with the Public Health Foundation, South Carolina hosted a Quality Improvement (QI) training to teach staff how to change their current model to offer two service tracks, which would increase patient satisfaction, reduce clinic wait times, improve staff morale, and manage budget cuts. Results from pilot tests showed promising results: improved clinic efficiency and additional capacity to serve patients. Other employees also wanted to reap benefits and QI is now expanding into individuals' daily work habits which make all operations more efficient and effective.

Demonstration of QI projects, both programmatic and administrative, are required for public health accreditation. This is a programmatic project; of which there are fewer examples in the public domain.

This presentation will cover project goals, results, outcomes, and the role that QI played. It captures valuable lessons learned about how to dissuade naysayers and how to change state policy. Additionally it will explain how one QI project has led to a culture shift. Presentation attendees will be able to describe the QI process, the role it plays in accreditation, and how to implement change. Applying QI is a public health best practice; attendees will be able to see parallels to their own situation and learn from this example.

Learning Areas:
Protection of the public in relation to communicable diseases including prevention or control
Provision of health care to the public

Learning Objectives:
Explain the role of quality improvement in accreditation. Describe the key components of a quality improvement project. Explain how one quality improvement project can lead to a culture shift.

Keywords: Quality Improvement, STD

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have completed project management duties for 3 years and have provided guidance to health departments for more than 1 year on the type of quality improvement and performance management training they need. I work with local and state health departments as part of my role with the Public Health Foundation.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.