By Sarah Loicano, 81st Training Wing Public Affairs
/ Published November 21, 2019
Keesler Medical Center
The American College of Surgeons recognized the Keesler Medical Center as a 2018 meritorious hospital for its surgical patient care recently.
The ACS National Surgical Quality Improvement Program recognized Keesler as being in the top 10 percent of 722 hospitals nationwide for patient outcomes in all cases and in the high risk categories.
”We are certainly focused on good patient care and following known and established guidelines for the things that allow patients to do well,” said Lt. Col. (Dr.) Jennifer Sexton, 81st Medical Group vascular surgeon. “I think that what this says is that across the board our surgeons lead the teams well to take good care of our patients. We take excellent care of them before, during, and after the surgery and we are following the protocols and guidelines that we need to so the patients have good outcomes.”
The quality improvement program required participating hospitals to track inpatient and outpatient outcomes in the areas of cardiac, respiratory, unplanned intubation, ventilator use after 48 hours, renal failures, surgical site infections and urinary tract infections. They were also required to collect data that assesses patient safety and can be used to direct improvement in the quality of surgical care. Everyone from nurses, technicians, anesthesiologists and other medical providers involved in pre and post-operative care contributed to this recognition.
Keesler was one of 56 participating hospitals to be recognized in both patient care categories – all patients and high risk patients. High risk patients include those who are very sick, have chronic diseases or who may have had a previous serious health condition such as a heart attack, explained Sexton.
ACS NSQIP is the only nationally validated quality improvement program that measures and enhances the care of surgical patients. This program measures the actual surgical results 30 days postoperatively as well as risk adjusts patient characteristics to compensate for differences among patient populations and acuity levels. The goal of ACS NSQIP is to reduce infection or illness related to a surgical procedure and surgical mortality and to provide a firm foundation for surgeons to apply what is known as the “best scientific evidence” to the practice of surgery. Furthermore, when adverse effects from surgical procedures are reduced or eliminated, a reduction in health care costs follows.
“This recognition is an affirmation of what we had always hoped was the case, but now we have the data point that says we are committed to taking excellent care of patients in a safe manner,” Sexton added.