IBCD: Development and testing of a checklist to improve quality of care for hospitalized general medical patients

Quality and Safety Scholarship & Discovery Track, Pritzker School of Medicine, University of Chicago, USA.
Joint Commission journal on quality and patient safety / Joint Commission Resources 04/2013; 39(4):147-56.
Source: PubMed


Several studies have demonstrated the usefulness of medical checklists to improve quality of care in surgery and the ICU. The feasibility, effectiveness, and sustainability of a checklist was explored.
Literature on checklists and adherence to quality indicators in general medicine was reviewed to develop evidence-based measures for the IBCD checklist: (I) pneumococcal immunization, (B) pressure ulcers (bedsores), (C) catheter-associated urinary tract infections (CAUTIs), and (D) deep venous thrombosis (DVT) were considered conditions highly relevant to the quality of care in general medicine inpatients. The checklist was used by attending physicians during rounds to remind residents to perform four actions related to these measures. Charts were audited to document actions prompted by the checklist.
The IBCD checklist was associated with significantly increased documentation of and adherence to care processes associated with these four quality indicators. Seventy percent (46/66) of general medicine teams during the intervention period of July 2010-March 2011 voluntarily used the IBCD checklist for 1,168 (54%) of 2,161 patients. During the intervention period, average adherence for all four checklist items increased from 68% on admission to 82% after checklist use (p < .001). Average adherence after checklist use was also higher when compared to a historical control group from one year before implementation (82% versus 50%, p < .0001). In the six weeks after the checklist was transitioned to the electronic medical record, IBCD was noted in documentation of 133 (59%) of 226 patients admitted to general medicine.
A checklist is a useful and sustainable tool to improve adherence to, and documentation of, care processes specific to quality indicators in general medicine.

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The low to very low quality of the evidence of studies included in this review provides insufficient evidence to determine with certainty which interventions are most effective in changing professional behaviour and in what contexts. However, interventions that may be worth further study are educational interventions involving more than one active element and that are repeatedly administered over time, and interventions employing specialised personnel, who are focused on an aspect of care that is supported by evidence e.g. dentists/dental auxiliaries performing oral care for VAP prevention.
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