Making quality stick: Optimal Resources for Surgical Quality and Safety: Individual disciplines working together in an increasingly regulated environment

Editor’s note: In July 2017, the American College of Surgeons (ACS) released Optimal Resources for Surgical Quality and Safety—a new manual that is intended to serve as a trusted resource for surgical leaders seeking to improve patient care in their institutions and make quality stick. Each month, the Bulletin highlights some of the salient points made throughout the “red book.”

Optimal Resources for Surgical Quality and SafetyIncreasingly, surgical care is provided by multidisciplinary teams. Thus, quality champions must be aware of the scope of practice, practice guidelines, quality improvement programs and registries, and regulatory requirements unique to each discipline involved in the delivery of surgical care. Optimal Resources for Surgical Quality and Safety addresses the unique characteristics and requirements for general surgery and 19 other surgical fields, including the following: surgical oncology; trauma, emergency general, and critical care surgery; burn, abdominal transplant, vascular, bariatric and metabolic surgery; and rural, pediatric, complex gastrointestinal, orthopaedic, urologic, neurological, cardiothoracic, otolaryngology, ophthalmic, gynecologic, and plastic surgery.

Health care professionals in these and other disciplines are facing increasing external regulatory pressures. These demands are exerted by federal agencies, licensing boards, accrediting bodies, medical specialty boards, professional organizations, health care institutions, and so on. Active participation in the process of improving standards of care and a commitment to accountability and transparency, rather than blind submission to an increasing regulatory framework, will be the winning strategy in the future. It is imperative that surgeons work with internal and external stakeholders, including regulatory agencies, to enhance the quality and safety of the health care services they provide to their patients.

Be sure to read next month’s overview of the red book, which will focus on data analytics and putting data gleaned from clinical registries to work for quality improvement and patient safety.

Optimal Resources for Surgical Quality and Safety is available on the ACS website for $44.95 per copy for orders of nine copies or fewer and $39.95 for orders of 10 or more copies.

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