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NQC e-Newsletter |  Your expert guide to resources and technical assistance focusing on improving HIV care.




The National Quality Forum has endorsed 14 new infectious disease measures. This reminds us of the national focus on standardized performance measurement and its use to improve HIV care. It is important to point out that three of these measures for which HRSA has received endorsement are based on the in+care Campaign. This certainly reflects the excellent work of the Campaign's Technical Workgroup in developing these measures. NQC is proud to be affiliated with such outstanding professionals.


NQC also salutes the hundreds of organizations that have joined the in+care Campaign and participated with such energy and enthusiasm. It is gratifying to see this type of commitment from busy professionals and more importantly, to share in their commitment to quality improvement. Together we are making a positive difference in HIV care. NQC is proud to be on this journey with you all.


Warm regards,


Clemens Steinbock

Director, National Quality Center


> In This Issue

> News | NQF Endorses New Measures
> NQC News | Check Out Upcoming NQC Trainings
> NQC News | in+care Update
> Real World Quality: Benjamin Harris
> Consumer Perspective | Anna Fowlkes
> NQC Consultant Spotlight: Maria Lacomba
> Highlights from the NQC Collection | Using QI Tools to Improve
> News | NQF Endorses New Measures

The National Quality Forum (NQF) recently endorsed 14 infectious disease measures (8 are HIV measures). The focus of these measures is to help individuals stay healthy by treating disease earlier and more effectively. HRSA submitted and received endorsement for 4 of the 14 measures:
NQF 2079: HIV medical visit frequency
NQF 2080: Gap in HIV medical visits
NQF 2082: HIV viral load suppression
NQF 2083: Prescription of HIV antiretroviral therapy

Three of these measures were based on in+care Campaign measure (Gap Measure, Visit Frequency Measure, and Viral Suppression Measure). HRSA aims to get these 4 NQF endorsed measures included into Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services programs including Meaningful Use and Physician Quality Reporting system (PQRS). When these measures are integrated, it will mean in+care Campaign participating agencies will have experience in collecting, extracting, synthesizing, and reporting these data.

Learn more | Click here

NQC News | Upcoming Trainings

NQC is pleased to announce two face-to face-trainings that will take place in the Spring of 2013.

  • Training of Quality Leaders (TQL), Atlanta, GA, April 23-25.
    The TQL Program provides participants the opportunity to enhance their own expertise in quality management, build the skills needed to work as facilitators to guide the development of sound quality management programs and/or quality improvement projects with impact on patient health outcomes, and develop group facilitation skills to better address team dynamics.

To apply l  https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/23FGGZL

  • Training on Coaching Basics (TCB), Chicago, IL, May 13-15.
    The Training on Coaching Basics (TCB) Program aims to address the educational gaps of quality managers and to increase quality improvement competencies by building the quality improvement capacity of quality leaders to coach other HIV providers on quality improvement.

To apply  l  https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/LQWKDHQ


Space is limited for these trainings, so register early. More information can be found on the NQC website:
TQL - www.NationalQualityCenter.org/TQL and
TCB - www.NationalQualityCenter.org/TCB.

Questions? | Contact Kevin Garrett at Kevin@NationalQualityCenter.org or 212.417 4730.

> NQC News | in+care Update


The Campaign topic for the month of February is "Social Service Providers' Role in Retention." Two webinars on the topic are currently being put together and Campaign staff is excited to present both the provider and the patient perspective through these webinars. If you have any questions or concerns in this area that you would like to see addressed in the webinars, please email Michael Hager at Michael@NationalQualityCenter.org.


Be on the lookout for new Enhanced Campaign Reports that are currently under development. Soon to be released tools include:

  • Comparisons by State
  • Facility-Type Comparisons


Upcoming Campaign Deadlines

February 14 - Improvement Update Form Submission

April 1 - Data Submission


Learn more about the in+care Campaign | www.incarecampaign.org


> Real World Quality: Benjamin Harris

"My favorite part of my job is leading the performance review during our monthly CQI team meetings," relates Benjamin Harris, who oversees quality-related activities for the HIV program at Erie Family Health Center in Chicago. "Using data, we can look at our measures and identify where we are doing well and where we need improvement. We explore the barriers to care and brainstorm about what can be done to address them."


In the past few months the team has sought to improve performance in several areas including pneumococcal vaccines, pap smears, and flu vaccination. For example, staff noticed that some patients left the clinic before they received their flu vaccination. A "flu clinic," staffed by a medical assistant, was set up one day a week so that patients did not have to schedule a clinical office visit. As a result, vaccination rates increased.


To benefit from the insights and experiences of his peers, Benjamin participates in the Greater Chicago HIVQUAL Regional Group, which is coordinated by NQC coach Nanette Brey Magnani. "The training I receive through the group is excellent," says Benjamin." Nanette does a great job of giving us technical quality improvement skills, but I can also see what other providers are trying and how they are shifting their care models. It gives me ideas of what I can do in our own program."

> NQC e-Newsletter | Volume 6 | Issue 56 | Feb 2013

Quick Links


> Upcoming Events | February - May

February 7 | in+Care Campaign | Retention on Patient-by-Patient Basis
February 21 | National TA Call | The Right Tool for the Job - Using QI Tools to Improve

February 26 | in+Care Campaign | Social Service Providers Role in Retention

April 23-25 | Training of Quality Leaders (TQL), Atlanta, GA

May 20-22 | Training on Coaching Basics (TCB), Chicago, IL

> Consumer Perspective: Anna Fowlkes

"It impacts us, it is as simple as that," says Anna Fowlkes. "Providers often have their own perspective of what consumers need, which may not fit for all consumers."

In her work as a consumer advocate and HIV prevention educator in the Baltimore area, Anna represents multiple perspectives. Diagnosed at age 59, she often does outreach to older populations. She also brings the perspective of an African American woman living with HIV. "With HIV, people are always fighting stigma," says Anna. "I tell people that they need to talk about their status since that is the only way they can communicate their needs and the needs of other consumers to providers."

Anna's main focus is educational outreach. She regularly speaks at public events and urges people to get tested. And, she is quite convincing. She has spoken at several senior centers and organizers report running out of test kits due to demand. In addition to her work as an educator, Anna has served on the Greater Baltimore City HIV and Health Services Planning Council for three years and is part of a working group formed by the Baltimore City Health Department to develop a social media campaign for the newly diagnosed.

Anna attended the NQC's Training of Consumers for Quality workshop, which was held in spring 2012. While the training increased her knowledge of HIV and helped her develop important skills, she reports that the connections she made with other consumers have been invaluable in her work. She has remained in regular contact with several other participants and gets their input on various projects. For example, she gained feedback from her NQC peers on the social media tool for the newly diagnosed, which helped to shape the content of the messages.

"I speak with them almost on a weekly basis," says Anna about her ongoing contact with other consumers she met through NQC. "Not only does it provide me with support but I draw on their knowledge and experiences. I can bring their perspectives to my work."

> NQC Consultant Spotlight: Maria Lacomba, MBA 


Maria recently joined the NQC as a Quality Improvement Coach to grantees in Puerto Rico. With an MBA from the University of Puerto Rico, she has over 26 years of executive level experience in the public health field in Puerto Rico and US. Her expertise in administration of primary health care programs, finance, human resources, quality of care assessment, practice management systems, and electronic health records configuration and implementation provides additional in-depths knowledge to integrate quality efforts throughout an organization using the available information technology. Maria is passionate about integrating quality improvement programs and performance measurement with the strategic vision of the organization.

Maria has been a consultant to HRSA with the Bureau of Primary Health Care and HAB for over 20 years-performing operational assessments and providing leadership/management training/coaching-focused technical assistance site visits. In Puerto Rico she is the leading consultant with the Primary Care Association providing specific technical assistance/coaching to primary care grantees to achieve Patient Centered Medical Home (PCMH) recognition by NCQA. She is current with critical core and emerging issues in the health care industry at the local and national level, and has served as trainer and instructor on financial matters, managed care, Bureau of Primary Health Care program requirements, UDS Reporting, and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid's Meaningful Use.

Recientemente María se unió a NQC como el Consultor de Mejoramiento de Calidad para los recipientes de fondos en Puerto Rico. Con un MBA de la Universidad de Puerto Rico, María tiene más de 26 años de experiencia a nivel ejecutivo en el campo de la salud pública en Puerto Rico y EEUU. Su experiencia en administración de programas de salud primarios, finanzas, recursos humanos, evaluación de la calidad, sistemas de información y en la configuración e implementación de sistemas de récord médico electrónicos le provee una perspectiva profunda adicional para integrar los esfuerzos de calidad a través de la organización utilizando los sistemas de información disponibles. A María le apasiona el integrar los programas de mejoramiento de la calidad y de medición de ejecutoria con la visión estratégica de la organización.


María ha sido consultora para el Negociado de Salud Primaria de HRSA y el Negociado de VIH/SIDA por más de 20 años realizando evaluaciones operacionales y proveyendo asistencia técnica en liderazgo, adiestramiento gerencial y "coaching" en visitas individuales. En Puerto Rico ella es la consultora principal para la Asociación de Salud Primaria donde provee asistencia técnica especifica y "coaching" a centros de salud primarios para que logren el reconocimiento como "Patient Centered Medical Home" por NCQA. Ella se mantiene actualizada en asuntos esenciales críticos y emergentes en la industria de la salud a nivel local y nacional, y ha servido como adiestradora / instructora en asuntos de finanzas, cuidado coordinado, requisitos programáticos del Negociado de Salud Primaria, informes UDS y Uso Significativo del Centro para Medicare y Medicaid. 

> Highlights from the NQC Collection Using QI Tools to Improve


Having the right tool for the job can make the difference between getting the job done and getting nothing done at all. NQC has a large collection of tools to support grantees in their quality-related activities.

National TA Conference Call
The Right Tool for the Job - Using QI Tools to Improve
February 21, 3:00 - 4:30 pm ET

Prework Resources:
As part of our newly expanded National TA calls, NQC is now suggesting that grantees review these resources before the call: This will help you to frame questions for our presenters and enhance your learning experience.

Quality Academy Tutorial: Useful Quality Improvement Tools
The tutorial introduces data analysis and data display tools and also describes the construction of run charts, histograms, and cause-and-effect diagrams.
Learn More | Click Here

Quality Academy Tutorial: Making Graphs in Microsoft Excel
This tool will discuss why the graphical display of data is useful in quality improvement work and walks you through constructing 4 types of graphs in Excel. 
Learn More | Click Here

NQC Game Guide:
The NQC Game Guide has 20 interactive games to reinforce selected concepts in quality improvement through interactive exercises that are also fun.  Our experience is consistent with adult learning theory, which reminds us that adults learn by doing, not by merely listening.  Section IV, Games to Teach System Skills, should be reviewed. 
NQC Game Guide | Click Here

Additional Non-NQC Resource:  The Memory Jogger published by GOAL/QPC
This guide provides a wealth of information on a plethora of quality improvement tools.  It provides easy-to-understand details about the tools and offers examples of their use.  It is available through on-line book resellers.

National Quality Center

New York State Department of Health

AIDS Institute

90 Church Street, 13th floor

New York, NY 10007-2919

Phone | 212.417.4730

Fax | 212.417.4684

Email | Info@NationalQualityCenter.org 


Sharing, Training, Consulting.

Improving HIV Care.

> About Us


We provide no-cost, state-of-the-art technical assistance to all Ryan White Program-funded grantees to improve the quality of HIV care nationwide.  


Send questions, comments, or suggestions | Info@NationalQualityCenter.org  


This e-Newsletter is produced by the National Quality Center, a quality improvement initiative funded through a cooperative agreement with the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) HIV/AIDS Bureau. For more information | NationalQualityCenter.org  


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