March 2023 | Issue 24
TeamSTEPPS Tools | Check out TeamSTEPPS overview
Did you know a study from Johns Hopkins suggests medical errors are the third-leading cause of death in the U.S., having surpassed strokes, Alzheimer’s and diabetes? In fact, one in seven Medicare patients receiving care in a hospital is the victim of a medical error. According to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), communication breakdowns are the most common causes of medical errors. Whether verbal or written, poor communication often results in medical errors.

TeamSTEPPS® is an evidence-based set of tools developed in collaboration with AHRQ that aims to optimize patient outcomes by improving communication and teamwork skills among health care professionals. IHS and PATH encourage facilities to implement the TeamSTEPPS communication concepts and tools, which are foundational to a Culture of Safety.

To learn more, check out PATH’s TeamSTEPPS overview and supplemental guide
or talk with your PATH quality improvement advisor.
Public Health Emergency (PHE) Ends May 11!
The end of the COVID-19 pandemic PHE will impact many measures put into place by the federal government to waive or modify certain requirements for Medicare, Medicaid, CHIP programs, private health insurance and other areas. Many actions are recommended or required for health care facilities and agencies to prepare for the expiration of these measures.

This presentation done by Dr. Loretta Christensen, MD, MBA, MSJ, FACS, CMO, called Tribal Self-Governance Advisory Committee (TSGAC): PHE Unwinding, reviews changes to expect and actions to take, and provides informative resources.

Check out these other resources as you prepare. Please reach out to your PATH quality improvement advisor (QIA) if you have any questions, needs or requests for support.
Monitoring Measures to Improve Care Transitions
As patients prepare to move from the hospital to somewhere else, failing to make adequate discharge arrangements can lead to costly and unnecessary hospital readmissions, preventable adverse events and drug-related errors.

IHS area offices are spreading an approach to improve the quality of care transitions. Find out what they are doing in this month's IHS Partner Spotlight.
PATH and the IHS National Nursing Leadership Council Executive Committee are excited to offer a two-part learning series on nursing leadership's role in infection prevention and control (IPC)!

Join us April 4 and April 11 for “Infection Prevention and Control for Nursing Leaders,” a two-session course featuring three speakers with decades of combined experience in hospital infection prevention.
These events will cover essential IPC concepts for existing or emerging nursing leaders and anyone with infection prevention and control oversight. This offering is free, but you must register in advance. Please be sure to save the meeting invite to your calendar once you have registered. Nurses who attend both 1.5-hour sessions are eligible for three (3) hours of Nursing Continuation Education Units (CEUs).
Series Information:
Looking Ahead
Our PATH team is excited to bring you diverse offerings this spring and summer. Upcoming topics include
  • back-to-basics National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN) user tips and FAQ;
  • understanding indigenous social determinants of health (SDOH);
  • a podcast series discussing real-life examples and challenges experienced by both patients and staff in emergency care settings;
  • ongoing support for Just Culture Champions;
  • ...and more!

More information to come! Keep an eye on your inboxes!

Did You Know?
We know life happens, and though you may have wanted to attend a live event, a time conflict or any other many possible reasons kept you from it. Not to worry! PATH has got you covered. Many of our past event recordings, key takeaways, flyers and resources can be found on our event page on our website. 

Please feel free to check out our PATH Events page if you missed an event or would like a refresher. While you are there, check out some of our other postings and materials available to you.
2023 CMS Quality Conference | May 1-3
The 2023 Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Quality Conference is quickly approaching! This virtual conference will feature:
  • Expert speakers on critical topics related to this year's theme: Building Resilient Communities: Having an Equitable Foundation for Quality Health Care
  • Professional networking opportunities with key decision-makers in health care quality improvement
  • Opportunities to learn about health equity, patient empowerment and how CMS uses data-driven results to inform changes to the future of health care quality improvement

This conference is virtual, representing the widest reaching gathering of health care quality leaders to have a broader, positive impact on pervasive health system challenges. Leaders in health care will explore and educate how advocates, providers, researchers and champions in health care quality improvement can spread solutions.
This material was prepared by Comagine Health for the American Indian Alaska Native Healthcare Quality Initiative under contract with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), an agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Views expressed in this material do not necessarily reflect the official views or policy of CMS or HHS, and any reference to a specific product or entity herein does not constitute endorsement of that product or entity by CMS or HHS. NQIIC-AIHQI-342-03/20/2023