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Physician Engagement

A Key Concept in the Journey for Quality Improvement

McGonigal, Michelle, DNP, RN; Bauer, Matthew, MHA; Post, Christopher, MD, PhD, MSS, FACS

doi: 10.1097/CNQ.0000000000000258
Original Articles

In the 2001 Institute of Medicine report on patient outcomes in the United States, one of the key concepts was the importance of collaboration within the health care team by using quality improvement methodologies as a foundation and using data to drive change and improve patient outcomes and ultimately the health of the nation. Ensuring that all health care providers have a voice at the table on key initiatives has been a challenge to implement, especially when attempting to involve frontline staff including physicians and nurses. In regard to the particular organization to be discussed, it was important to have an understanding of what issues resonated with physicians and the health care team as a whole in order to successfully integrate their expertise into committee work and practice changes that were priorities for the organization. As a starting point, a review of physician engagement strategies was completed and priorities were matched according to physician specialty and interest. Due to the increasing external pressure to examine and improve outcomes in hospital-acquired infections and in particular, reduction of central line-associated blood stream infections, catheter-associated urinary tract infections, surgical site infections, and Clostridium difficile infections, these areas were the focus of the initial physician-led teams. The positive outcomes in both physician engagement and satisfaction as well as patient outcomes were evidence to pursue additional team approaches in complication reviews, employee injury teams, and mortality risk reduction.

Allegheny General Hospital, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Correspondence: Michelle McGonigal, DNP, RN, Allegheny General Hospital, 12th floor South Tower, 320 East North Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15212 (

The author has disclosed that she has no significant relationships with, or financial interest in, any commercial companies pertaining to this article.

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