UCI News

The Joint Commission identifies best practices at UC Irvine Medical Center

Anesthesia services, medication management and medical records among lauded areas.

August 20, 2010

The Joint Commission has conferred full three-year accreditation upon UC Irvine Medical Center and identified several “best practices” ranging from anesthesia services to medication management and medical records during its recent survey.

“The dedication to improving patient care reflected in The Joint Commission’s survey demonstrates that we are becoming one of the country’s top medical centers,” said Terry A. Belmont, CEO of UC Irvine Medical Center.

At the conclusion of each accreditation review, The Joint Commission surveyors inform hospital officials of their findings, including services they believe represent best practices in hospital care.

They called the organization and quality of care provided by UCI’s Department of Anesthesiology & Perioperative Care “top notch” and a national model for sedation services. Surveyors also recognized the department’s Center for Preoperative Care for its outstanding surgery booking process, and they suggested the Perioperative SafetyNet be adopted hospital-wide. SafetyNet is a “near-miss” data system that allows operating room staff to report potential issues so they can be addressed before an incident occurs.

“We are proud of our department’s accomplishments over the past two years and are delighted to be recognized by The Joint Commission surveyors,” said Dr. Zeev N. Kain, chair of the anesthesiology & perioperative care department and associate dean of clinical research. The department has modernized anesthesia services with millions of dollars invested in new equipment and staff and has greatly improved patient experiences before, during and after surgery.

Other best practices surveyors identified include:

  • Use of medical records as a tool for communication
  • Comprehensive patient-care handoff and communication between caregivers
  • Medication management and pharmacy practices
  • Thorough assessment of patient care throughout the organization
  • Patient support in the infusion center at Chao Family Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • Emergency planning and monitoring
  • Environmental and cleaning services.

The Joint Commission is an independent, not-for-profit organization that accredits and certifies more than 17,000 healthcare organizations and programs in the United States.

About UC Irvine Medical Center: Orange County’s only university hospital, UC Irvine Medical Center offers acute- and general-care services at its new 482,000-square-foot UC Irvine Douglas Hospital and is home to the county’s only Level I trauma center, American College of Surgeons-verified regional burn center and National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center. U.S. News & World Report has included UCI for 10 consecutive years on its list of America’s Best Hospitals, giving special recognition to its programs in urology, gynecology, and ear, nose & throat.

About the University of California, Irvine: Founded in 1965, UCI is a top-ranked university dedicated to research, scholarship and community service. Led by Chancellor Michael Drake since 2005, UCI is among the most dynamic campuses in the University of California system, with nearly 28,000 under- graduate and graduate students, 1,100 faculty and 9,000 staff. Orange County’s largest employer, UCI contributes an annual economic impact of $3.9 billion. For more UCI news, visit www.today.uci.edu.

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