Quality and Safety Special Interest Group
Role of the Quality and Safety Special Interest Group:
The Quality and Safety Special Interest Group (QSSIG) was founded in 2016 and exists to provide a forum to share information on a variety of issues in regard to Quality Management and Patient Safety and to make recommendations to IFEM regarding the future directions of Quality and Safety in Emergency Medicine.
Functions of the Group:
- Provide a forum for networking and the exchange of information and views between individuals with a particular interest in Quality in EM.
- To foster collaboration between individuals with an interest in Quality and Safety in EM with a view to the identification of tools for improving patient safety in EDs, as well as support for improving education of staff and standards of practice within the ED, for use by IFEM members.
- To promote enhancement of patient safety and quality management amongst emergency physicians.
Objectives of the Group:
- To maintain the currency and relevance of the recently reviewed Quality Framework document
- To promote the quality framework standards, including guideline documents or a tool kit to assist in a practical approach for the implementation of the framework across a broad spectrum and settings where Emergency Medicine is practiced
- To identify outstanding issues of concern in regard to patient safety and quality management in the global EM community
- To assimilate useful Quality and Safety resources for clinical indicators, guidelines and practice change
- To make recommendations to IFEM in regard to the future of EM practice with regards to Quality and Safety
Expressions of interest are invited from IFEM Members to join the Special Interest Group. Nominations by your organisation, or self-nominations by individuals within your organisation, should be forwarded to the IFEM secretariat via our contact form.
Professor Melinda Truesdale | Chair
Australasian College for Emergency Medicine
Associate Professor Melinda Truesdale is an emergency physician based in Melbourne (Victoria) Australia. She has experience as a Director (Chief) of some Victorian Emergency Departments (EDs), an inspector / surveyor of Australian Council of Healthcare Standards (ACHS) for Hospital Accreditation and Emergency Departments accredited for training emergency physicians in Australasia by the Australasian College for Emergency Medicine (ACEM). She has been a long-standing member of the Quality and Patient Safety Committee for ACEM and she was the lead in the development of the most recent ACHS clinical indicators for EDs. From an international perspective Melinda has worked with the Utstein group to development a minimum data set for EDs (resource Utstein group in EJEM) and also focussed her sabbatical on quality and safety including writing a minor thesis on clinical indicators. Melinda was a founding member of the Quality IFEM group and moved from the Deputy Chair to Chair position in August 2019.
Dr Saravana Kamur | Vice Chair
Society of Emergency Medicine India
Dr Saravana Kumar completed his Emergency Medicine Training from India and MBA in Hospital Management from BITS,Pilani. He is the current GM and Unit Head of Dr Mehta’s Hospitals Chennai and leads Quality and patient safety across the organization and a Consultant in Emergency Medicine at Dr Mehta’s Hospitals, Chennai. He started his career at Dr Mehta’s as Head of Emergency Department. Dr Saravanakumar is currently the National Secretary of Society for Emergency Medicine India (SEMI)
Having gained his Quality and Patient Safety training experience from Consortium of Accredited Health care Organizations, India (CAHO) and Association of Healthcare Providers India (AHPI) he was instrumental in designing and bringing EM standards quality training program, Disaster Life Support Program, National Cardiac Life Support Training Programs by SEMI and CAHO and Implemented a Fellowship in Emergency Medicine certification course under SEMI in 2009 for which he was awarded as “Pioneer in SEMI Academics”.
Work and achievements
A key achievement over the past 12 months has been the Production of an Updated Quality Framework document. The key areas of focus in the updated Quality Framework are:
What patients should expect from an Emergency Department
- Expertise in critical care in collaboration with colleagues from anaesthesia and intensive care
- Early access to specialist inpatient and outpatient services to ensure appropriate ongoing evaluation and treatment of patients
- Appropriate duration of stay in the ED to maximise patient care and comfort and to optimise clinical outcomes
- Development of additional services alongside core ED activity
Enablers and barriers to quality care
- Physical structures
- ED Processes
- Co-ordinated emergency care throughout the patient pathway
- Monitoring of outcomes
Crowding (or overcrowding) is inconsistently defined and measured, but ideally should comprise a combination of non-flow items (such as ED occupancy) and flow items (such as length of stay).
- Quality improvement resources and processes
- Incident monitoring
- Morbidity and mortality review
- Integration and communication with ambulance, hospital specialities and primary care
Updated Framework on Quality and Safety in Emergency Medicine published in Emergency Medicine Journal
Kim Hansen, Adrian Boyle, Brian Holroyd, Georgina Phillips, Jonathan Benger, Lucas B Chartier, Fiona Lecky, Samuel Vaillancourt, Peter Cameron, Grzegorz Waligora, Lisa Kurland, Melinda Truesdale on behalf of the IFEM Quality and Safety Special Interest Group
In May 2020, IFEM’s Quality and Safety Special Interest Group’s Updated Framework on Quality and Safety in Emergency Medicine was published in the Emergency Medicine Journal.
Objective: Quality and safety of emergency care is critical. Patients rely on emergency medicine (EM) for accessible, timely and high-quality care in addition to providing a ‘safety-net’ function. Demand is increasing, creating resource challenges in all settings. Where EM is well established, this is recognized through the implementation of quality standards and staff training for patient safety. In settings where EM is developing, immense system and patient pressures exist, thereby necessitating the availability of tiered standards appropriate to the local context.
Resources and training
IFEM Quality Framework
An Updated Framework on Quality and Safety in Emergency Medicine (presentation slides)
Learning about QI
Starting a QI project
QI related conferences
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