California Health Care Safety Net Institute

SNI Bulletin: February 3, 2009

SNI Launches Redesigned Website, Includes New Features

In order to provide better access to information regarding California’s public hospitals’ quality improvement efforts, SNI proudly unveils its redesigned website. In addition to alignment with our revised vision, mission, goals, and three-year objectives, the new website also features an interactive map of California’s public hospitals and their clinics, and highlights the quality improvement work they’ve engaged in with SNI. Another feature we’ve added is more streamlined access to all the resources provided through our site. Visit often to see new features we’ll be rolling out over the coming months.

SNI Sets an Aspirational Course

As we celebrate our 10th anniversary this year, SNI is pleased to communicate clearly the aspirational course we’ve set to achieve our vision of assuring that “public hospital systems are recognized leaders in delivering and transforming health care practices that enable all individuals and families—particularly in diverse and underserved communities—to enjoy optimal health.” Please check out our revised vision, mission, goals and 2009-2011 objectives under “Recent News” at The more detailed document includes baseline data on our objectives, as well as strategies for achieving those objectives.

Four Public Hospital Systems Selected to Participate in SNI's New Lean Management Transformation Grant to Improve Core Measures Performance

Four public hospitals have been selected to participate in the Lean Core Measures Improvement Initiative: Arrowhead Regional Medical Center, Contra Costa Regional Medical Center, San Mateo Medical Center, and Ventura County Medical Center. SNI is partnering with former Virginia Mason Medical Center President, Mike Rona and his Rona Consulting Group to orient, coach, and train executive leadership and improvement teams through two Lean transformation events. This program, generously funded by the California HealthCare Foundation, is among the first in the country to apply Lean Management to improve clinical care processes. 

Contact: Evelyn Chan or Lance Mageno

MacColl Institute Releases New Chronic Care Model Toolkit; SNI a Partner

Supported by The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, in 2006 ateam from RAND, the MacColl Institute for Health Care Innovation and SNI began developing and testing a way to helpsafety net practices implement the Chronic Care Model along with complementary changes to business systems designed to assure sustainability. Pilots were tested in two California public hospitals: Santa Clara Valley Medical Center and San Mateo Medical Center. As a result, MacColl now provides a free toolkit, "Integrating Chronic Care and Business Strategies in the Safety Net," which comes complete with Web access to more than 60 tools, to guide teams through quality improvement.

SNI Announces Opportunity to Participate in REAL Data Planning Grant Interviews

Studies show that accurate race, ethnicity, and language (REAL) data collection is paramount to achieving equity in health care. With funding from The California Endowment, SNI is conducting research and planning to assess system-level barriers, feasibility and success factors in collecting REAL data and using these data to improve quality. In the coming months, SNI will conduct interviews with staff at public hospitals to learn about the ways in which SNI can support public hospitals’ efforts to improve REAL data collection and use. Participation in the interview process is required in order to take part in SNI’s anticipated implementation program. Soon, SNI will disseminate additional information on this initiative, including applications to participate in the interview process.

If you or your organization would like to take part in the interview process or receive additional information, please contact Erin Bowman.

CAPH Member Hospital Systems Featured in Equity Guide Aimed at Hospital Leaders

A demonstrated commitment to create equity on the part of hospital leadership has been a critical aspect of California’s public hospital systems’ success in providing high quality, culturally competent care. Two public hospital leaders, Dr. William Walker, Director of Contra Costa Health Services and Pete Delgado, CEO of LAC+USC Medical Center, were featured in The Disparities Solution Center’s publication, “Improving Quality and Achieving Equity: A Guide for Hospital Leaders.” The guide offers hospital leadership a concise look at racial and ethnic disparities in health care, providing a rationale for addressing these disparities, which includes the financial, quality, and patient safety implications. Model sites, including Contra Costa Health Services and LAC+USC Medical Center, are used as practical examples of hospital systems actively engaged in addressing disparities.

Stay Tuned: SNI’s New Three-year Program for Outpatient Clinics

SNI has been working hard to design a new program to continue spreading the successes of two familiar SNI outpatient program areas: operational efficiency with Coleman Associates and clinical care improvements for diabetes and other chronic diseases, while better integrating these improvement areas with each other. New areas of focus include: improving patients’ access to care, a focus on patient experience and staff satisfaction, and a reliable way to communicate senior leadership engagement to frontline teams. The goal is to help public clinics be well-supported and well-designed care homes for their patients. SNI is in discussions with the potential funder and hopes to launch in April, with clinic teams’ program work starting in Fall 2009.

Contact: Hunter Gatewood

California’s Public Hospitals Lead the Way

Public Hospital System Staff Share Best Practices at 2009 Kaiser CMI Community Forum
Several public hospital system staff were featured at the 2009 Kaiser CMI Community Forum on Jan. 28, which focused on the ways in which health care organizations can provide integrated, high-quality, culturally competent care in a difficult financial climate. Dr. Joseph Allevato, Assistant Medical Director of Edward R. Roybal Comprehensive Health Center, Dr. Raquel Soto of Harbor-UCLA, and Lilli Thompson and Lily Wong of Rancho Los Amigos Rehabilitation Center were all featured speakers for the day.

Four CAPH Members Achieve "Baby Friendly" Designations
CAPH members San Francisco General Hospital, Ventura County Medical Center, UC San Diego Medical Center, and Arrowhead Regional Medical Center make up four of the approximately 75 hospitals nationwide honored with the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative (BFHI) designation. The BFHI is a global program sponsored by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) to encourage and recognize hospitals and birthing centers that offer an optimal level of care for lactation. The California Report recently featured San Francisco General's Baby-Friendly distinction in their Jan. 22 newsmagazine.

CHCF Issue Brief on e-Prescribing in California Highlights Pilots at CAPH Hospitals
The California Health Care Foundation released an Issue Brief in Nov. 2008, Getting Connected: The Outlook for e-Prescribing in California. The Brief includes a description of SNI’s e-Prescribing pilot with Contra Costa Regional Medical Center, Kern Medical Center, Riverside Regional Medical Center and San Mateo Medical Center.

SNI Welcomes New Program Associate to Staff

Please join us in welcoming new Program Associate, Evelyn Chan, to the SNI staff. Evelyn comes to SNI having worked for 6 years as a Registered Dietitian in acute and long-term health care settings. She has initiated performance improvement efforts both in health care, as well as in health and nutrition promotion in a nonprofit center serving low-income children. As a new Program Associate, Evelyn will have major responsibility for launching and coordinating the Lean Core Measures Improvement Initiative, as well as working on multiple aspects of the Quality First Initiative, including data analysis. She will complete her Master’s degree in Public Health this coming May at San Francisco State University.

Upcoming Events and Deadlines

Feb. 7 UC Berkeley’s Haas Business of Health Care Conference, Berkeley, CA.

Mar. 20-21 California Healthcare Interpreting Association 9th Annual Educational Conference, Palo Alto, CA.

Apr. 21-23 IHI’s Engaging Physicians in a Shared Quality Agenda, Chicago, IL. Contact: Afiya Palmer, (510) 874-7102.

Apr. 23-24 IHI’s Reengineering the Operating Room to Improve Hospital-Wide Efficiency and Quality, Washington DC. Contact: Afiya Palmer, (510) 874-7102.

June 30 Application Deadline for Palliative Care: Expansion Grant Applications and Implementation. Applications are due on a rolling basis by June 30.