To examine the effectiveness of an ongoing statewide public health quality improvement training program (PH QI 101) among 4 cohorts of training participants.
We conducted a mixed-method evaluation of the PH QI 101 training program that included measures of participants' satisfaction, learning, behavior change, and participants' translation and spread to their organizations what was learned. Data analysis included descriptive quantitative statistics and qualitative reviews. The Mann-Whitney U test was used to examine changes in participants' confidence to conduct a QI project from pre- to posttraining and 6 months posttraining.
Two hundred two staff members from 37 North Carolina local health departments.
An 8-month experiential learning process in which participants learn to use QI methods by applying them to a specific project.
More than 90% of participants reported satisfaction with the program. Median scores on perceived self-confidence to conduct a QI project significantly increased for all training waves. At least 85% of participants reported spreading QI tools to coworkers posttraining. Two-thirds of participants in 3 waves reported that the QI project conducted during the training was at the sustaining results stage. Most participants in 3 of the training waves reported initiating new QI projects at their health department following training. Facilitators to implementation included interest and support from managers and leaders. Lack of interest and competing priorities among other staff were key barriers to implementation.
This program successfully trained 4 waves of public health professionals in QI tools and methods. Leader training and involvement was a key addition to the adapted model. This statewide approach may serve as a model to other states as they seek to achieve national accreditation standards.