In 2008, Avalon Health Care was in the process of re-evaluating the Quality Assurance (QA) program for their 38-facility organization covering five states. “We had a procedure that was really a systems review process and we wanted to change to a more outcome-oriented system,” Nani recalled. “We knew the survey process was going to be changing to the QIS process that was supposed to be outcome oriented, so we figured we would model our new system after it.”
They downloaded all the QIS survey information and began creating their own paper-based process. Nani remembers them thinking it would be nice if somebody came up with a software program to do what they were building themselves. About this time, one of their regional nurses heard about our abaqis® Quality Management System. Nani discovered Providigm would be presenting abaqis at a convention in Las Vegas. She convinced their COO to join her, and as they sat in the front row listening to our presentation, she turned to him and said, “We absolutely have to have this.”
The timing also worked well for Avalon, because Providigm was just starting surveyor training in Washington State where they have facilities. We worked with Avalon to arrange train-the-trainer sessions with key staff on abaqis. Their staff then implemented the system company-wide. According to Nani, “The abaqis system has been very easy to implement. It’s been easy to teach to our staff, and it quickly became part of our regular routine.”
Avalon’s QA program utilizes abaqis across all levels of their organization. Each facility individualizes a plan for conducting assessments, while regional and corporate QA personnel assist with action plans and review activity. Results have been realized system-wide in terms of QA and performance improvement. While state averages for citations increased with the first QIS surveys from 8 to 11, Avalon’s decreased from 8 to around 5. “It’s one of the top tools we utilize, and I can’t imagine not having it,” exclaims Nani.