Problem: The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education emphasizes quality improvement (QI) education in residency/fellowship training programs. The Mayo Clinic Combined Critical Care Fellowship (CCF) program conducted a pilot QI education program to incorporate QI training as a required curriculum for the 2010–2011 academic year.
Approach: CCF collaborated with the Mayo Quality Academy to customize and teach the existing Mayo Quality Fellows curriculum to the CCF fellows with the help of two quality coaches over five months starting July 2010. All fellows were to achieve Bronze and Silver certification prior to graduation. Silver required passing four written exams and submitting a health care QI project. Five projects were selected on the basis of the Impact–Effort Prioritization matrix, and DMAIC (Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, and Control) methodology was used to complete the projects. The primary outcome was to assess learners’ satisfaction, knowledge, and skill transfer.
Outcomes: All 20 fellows were Bronze certified, and 14 (70%) were Silver certified by the time of graduation. All five QI projects were completed and showed positive impacts on patient safety and care. Surveys showed improved learner satisfaction. Graduates felt the QI training improved their QI skills and employment and career advancement. The QI curriculum had appropriate content and teaching pace and did not significantly displace other important clinical core curriculum topics.
Next Steps: The pilot was successfully implemented in the CCF program and now is in the fourth academic year as an established and integral part of the fellowship core curriculum.