Over 200 healthcare professionals and community service providers from across North Dakota met virtually for Quality Health Associates of North Dakota’s Annual Quality Forum on Thursday, May 23, 2019. It’s the first time a virtual format was used for the Forum with four University sites in North Dakota’s largest cities connected to ease access and time/travel commitment for attendees.
“This is the first time we’ve attempted a virtual event of this scale. I was pleased with the connectivity and ease of transition between sites. This is definitely a strategy we will replicate going forward to offer quality presentations and education to a larger audience across our state. It’s an efficient way to bring communities together to focus on improving health and healthcare in their local area.” ~Richard Bubach, CEO, Quality Health Associates of North Dakota, a member of Great Plains Quality Innovation Network.
The theme, The Power of Progress—Celebrating Successes, framed the day’s topics with presenters sharing outcomes on integrating diabetes self-management education with behavioral health, community collaborations to improve immunizations, colorectal cancer screening partnerships, opioid misuse risk screening opportunities for pharmacists, improving antipsychotic appropriateness in dementia patients and involving leadership to improve the safety culture. Forum attendee and collaborator Jody Ward, MS, RN, APHN, Senior Project Coordinator, UND Center for Rural Health, shared, “Today was a great opportunity to hear about collaborative efforts across North Dakota to improve the quality of healthcare. The lessons learned and hearing others share their journey is very valuable.”
Patients and families are the center of QHA’s quality improvement efforts and are always featured at the Forum. Brenda Munson, Voices of Healthcare member (QHA’s Patient and Family Advisory Council) shared her story as a caregiver/advocate for her husband as well as her experience as a council member. Brenda stated, “I feel very privileged to be part of QHA’s efforts. The QHA team works tirelessly to improve patient care across all communities in ND. This was demonstrated by the dedication of staff and Forum attendees that networked during the breakout community integration sessions. QHA has made great strides in improving the health and healthcare efforts for the people of ND. I am so excited to see what the 12th Statement of Work will bring to North Dakota.”
Attendees engaged in two hands-on activities that focused on dissecting problem statements to determine root causes and develop SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-based) goals. The stakeholder snowflake model was also used to help attendees understand this relational strategy to build collective leadership capacity and enlist community stakeholders’ commitments to a shared purpose. The approach to these activities was intended as a springboard for attendees to replicate in future collaborations within their organizations, facilities and community collaborations.