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QHC - Quality Health Care
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Mission Statement

The mission of the Division of Quality Health Care is to study, teach, and improve individual, corporate, and community health services delivery by applying the disciplines of classical and clinical epidemiology, the decision sciences, industrial management science,informatics, and the biomedical sciences.

About the Division of Quality Health Care

Founded in 1996, the goal of the Division of Quality Health Care is to integrate hospital epidemiology and quality assurance service activities with research focused in the areas of clinical performance outcomes. The division consists of a multidisciplinary faculty capable of comprehensive studies of quality. Already, the Division has won national acclaim and funding, and it has addressed public policy issues regarding quality.

Research

Research or past research projects focus(ed) on methodology of quality measurement and improvement, clinical epidemiology, cancer epidemiology and prevention, sickle cell disease, obesity reduction, violence, reduction of health disparities, medical decision making, changing physician behavior, epidemiology and prevention of nosocomial infections, and evaluation of programs to enhance community access to care.

Training Programs

Beginning in 1997, a federally funded National Research Service Award has been operational, training general internists, family practitioners, and pediatricians for leadership careers in academia, industry, government, or health care management. An active training program in hospital epidemiology has also been established. Most fellows in this program have completed training in Infectious Diseases or Medical Microbiology although this is not required. Fellows in both programs are required to do original research, and are trained in study design; critical analysis of the medical literature; and the design, implementation and analysis of clinical trials. Fellows also participate in the clinical and administrative activities of the units within the division, such as clinics or the infection control program.

Impact

Division members have been featured in USA Today, National Public Radio, the AHRQ’s Research Currents, numerous local television and print media, and have won awards from the Governor of Virginia, their specialty societies, and the University (teaching awards and research awards). The need for the division's work could not be greater. Defining, understanding, and improving quality in health care is still a battle cry from consumers and purchasers of health care, who are now willing to pay for quality. Providers need to become efficient and effective without sacrificing quality as competition for health care resources increases. They seek more effective clinical management strategies and strategies to more effectively implement change. Managed care organizations need to demonstrate quality as part of their value to buyers and beneficiaries.

Public and private payors and beneficiaries also need improved research on quality. They seek relevant information that may be easily interpreted regarding provider quality given restricted choice. They also seek personal, friendly service, assurance of access, appropriate lengths of stay, less expense, and faster recoveries.

Pharmaceutical, device, and equipment manufacturers also need research on quality. To participate in the new health care marketplace, these companies need to determine, demonstrate, and enhance the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of their products as part of a population-based health care improvement strategy.

Jointly, the Division's research addresses each of these constituents' needs. As can be seen, faculty areas of expertise span a breadth of issues in health care quality.

Division of Quality Health Care 2004-2005 Strategic Plan

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Site Created 06/21/2001. Last Updated: 02/26/2008