Accreditation is one of the most effective and visible ways we look at how we are doing in delivering safe and excellent hospital care. As a part of a four-year cycle, we conduct a self-assessment and then welcome an external team of Accreditation surveyors, comprised of our hospital peers from across Canada, to undertake an in-depth examination of our programs, processes and documentation to measure our performance against more than 1,700 different criteria.
This team reviews all aspects of the hospitals – from leadership and governance through to specific programs, services, safety and infection control practices.
The Yukon Hospital Corporation was awarded accreditation after a comprehensive survey in May 2014. Our hospitals in Whitehorse and Watson Lake were compliant with 89% of criteria and continue to address areas of improvement as a part of on-going commitment to quality improvement. Our next survey will take place in 2018. Recently opened, Dawson City Community Hospital will also participate at that time.
The Accreditation Process
Surveyors directly observe hospital operations, conduct interviews with patients and family members, staff and partners and undertake a documentation review. The accreditation team traces the journey of the patient and learns about administrative processes.
This may include tracing how an orthopedic patient moves through the entire system from the time they are referred through to discharge from hospital. From an administrative point of view they look at the process of development of the emergency response plan, how drills are practiced and evaluated. The purpose is to:
- observe and evaluate whether standards and criteria have been met
- provide feedback on how to address areas of concern
- discuss the organization’s progress in addressing self-identified areas for improvement
Required Organizational Practices
There are 31 “Required Organizational Practices” (ROPs) in six patient safety areas that Yukon Hospitals are required to have fully implemented in order to be a fully accredited facility. These include specific processes or policies in the areas of safety culture, communication, medication use, worklife/workforce, infection control and risk assessment.
The Benefits of Accreditation
Accreditation is one of the ways in which our hospitals publicly demonstrate accountability and our on-going commitment to quality. The award is also a recognition of excellence to our patients, community and health partners. There are a number of benefits for our hospitals to take part.
- facilitates continuous quality improvement
- assists us in addressing needed changes in our health care delivery
- demonstrates our hospitals’ commitment to excellence
- enhances team working and improves staff morale
- strengthens stakeholder confidence
- recognizes our achievements/innovations
- facilitates information sharing within the organization and with our partners