Accreditation Canada awards KGH "Accredited with Exemplary Standing"

News / General
By Peter Jeffrey

Kingston General Hospital has received great news from Accreditation Canada. We've earned an "Accredited with Exemplary Standing" award from the national organization in its final report. During the four-day survey last month, we met 2,223 out of the 2,248 standards and criteria we were measured on, for an overall score of 98.9 per cent.

"This survey is a real measure of how far we've come and how all our hard and focused teamwork is paying off," says CEO Leslee Thompson. "Thanks to these efforts and the partnering we are doing with our patients, we have just received the highest award that Accreditation Canada gives out."

As of 2012, Accreditation Canada now has four levels of award: No Accreditation, Accreditation, Accreditation with Commendation, and Accreditation with Exemplary Standing.

Our score this year is a sizeable improvement over our result during our last Accreditation Canada survey, back in 2009. In that review, KGH met 94.3 per cent of the standards and was awarded what was then called Accreditation with Condition. This required us to report back to Accreditation Canada to show the steps we took to meet some Required Organization Practices (ROP's) and priority processes. We received Accreditation the following year.

This time around, the surveyors found much to be impressed with as the final report makes clear. Among the highlights cited is our commitment to patient-centred care and interprofessional collaboration.

"This transformational organization is much-admired for the collaborations, networks and partnerships it has developed to achieve its mandate of Outstanding Care, Always," the report says. "There is an expectation that a culture of patient and family centred care, interprofessional collaborative practice and quality is embedded into every aspect of patient care delivery."

The report also notes the renewed spirit of leadership at KGH along with our improved staff morale.

"Staff members reported that they love their jobs and are proud to work at KGH," it says. "When staff are asked if they can feel a shift in the culture of KGH during the past three years, they are quick to respond in a positive manner."

Now, the goal will be to keep up the momentum. One area of focus will be the area of medication reconciliation. It's an ROP we met at an organizational level, and as the final report points out it needs to be fully implemented across the hospital in every program.

"The surveyors acknowledged that we have a very good medication reconciliation process in place for the internal medicine program and that we have a strong plan to roll it out to the rest of the organization," says Eleanor Rivoire, VP of Clinical Administration, Professional Practice and Chief Nursing Executive.

As for opportunities for improvement included in the report, the surveyors noted our need for upgraded facilities and redevelopment in many areas, as well as an extra effort to keep some work areas clean and clutter-free.

"An example of that is the need to be thoughtful about all the posters and signs up on the walls in our patient-care areas," says Rivoire. "Some can't be cleaned and many are outdated and ignored. The language used in some posters works against what we want as a welcoming and professional image for our patients, families and staff."

Now that the report is available, everyone is encouraged to take a closer look. It's a mix of metrics and comments from the surveyors and is another tool to help us keep improving.