National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization
In 2019, the HHS Office of Inspector General (OIG) released disheartening reports about the quality of hospice care around the country. The National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) made it their priority to ensure their members were continuously improving their quality of hospice care.
Organization: National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization
The National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization is the nation’s largest membership organization for providers and professionals who care for people affected by serious and life-limiting illness. Its broad community of members includes local hospice and palliative care providers, networks serving large regions of the United States, and individual professionals.
In 2019, the OIG put out damaging reports regarding the quality of hospice care across the United States. From 2012 to 2016, nearly all hospices that provided care were surveyed and over 80% of these hospices had at least once deficiency involving poor care planning, mismanagement of aide services, and inadequate assessments of beneficiaries.
With this in mind, NHPCO made it their priority to ensure their members were continuously improving their quality of hospice care.
“We had this concept in our head (of what the program would look like. After speaking with Web Courseworks to what they were able to do, it really aligned well. Web Courseworks already were utilizing dashboards with progress circles, so we were really excited about that.”
Custom Quality Improvement Program
NHPCO created a program (Quality Connections) to ensure all members were providing quality care/working on quality improvement. The program enhances the knowledge base, skills, and competency of hospice and palliative care staff through education, tools, resources, and opportunities for engagement and interaction among hospice and palliative care quality professionals.
Conditional Release-Driven Badges
Members have to complete four tasks to earn a ring (imagine the way an Apple watch would “close” a ring once you complete an activity). There are four program rings: Education, Application, Measurement, and Innovation, and each program ring has its own set of activities that every learner must complete.
NHPCO was able to award badges showing a learner’s progress depending on a previously completed activity within the program. The combination of restricting access to LMS content and conditional release of badges realized NHPCO’s goal of emulating the “closing the activity ring” experience.
Variety of Improvement Activities
Because CourseStage LMS is armed with extensive native authoring tools, NHPCO was able to utilize a wide variety of activities native to the LMS. Learning activities like assessments, quizzes, pre/post tests, self-reported activities, downloadable PDFs, surveys, accreditation confirmation documents, and more.
Every learner has to complete a self-assessment to start the program. Upon completion, the learner receives a personalized report (PDF) on which rings (program focus) they should prioritize and which tasks they should get started with.
With over 200 organizations enrolled in this program, NHPCO wanted to make sure they keep a close eye on participation and engagement.. NHPCO worked with Web Courseworks to build a report that’s automatically updated every morning, eliminating the need for a manual count on participants. Furthermore, NHPCO can filter the report to see who’s participating, which activities are most popular, and so on. They use this report to publicly recognize members who have achieved rings and badges.
Organization-Wide Quality Improvement
244 organizations have enrolled in the Quality Connections Program and 140 rings have been earned (organizations have to complete 4 tasks to earn a ring).
Automated reports have benefited NHPCO, as they can see which elements of the program that members are completing the most frequently and use that information to continue improving it.
Improved Member Satisfaction
NHPCO provided Quality Connections to members for free, as an included member benefit. They used it as one of their main member benefits in 2021, bringing together significant member resources in one solution.
Improved Public Recognition
While hospice organizations took a public relations hit in 2019, NHPCO is able to publish which organizations are taking active steps to improve. An overall effect of this is that the greater public can see how the hospice industry is improving. It can generate more positive public image for the industry overall and individual member organizations.
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