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PSNet: Patient Safety Network
Journal Article

Organizational factors associated with high performance in quality and safety in academic medical centers.

Keroack MA, Youngberg BJ, Cerese JL, et al. Academic medicine : journal of the Association of American Medical Colleges. 2007;82:1178-86.

Academic medical centers (AMCs) face unique challenges in translating their innovation in safety and quality research into clinical performance. This study examined discharge data from 79 AMCs to generate a scoring method for measures of safety, mortality, clinical effectiveness, and equity of care. After identifying three top performers and three average performers, a group of surveyors visited each site without knowledge of their score and made an objective assessment of the factors associated with their performance. The authors highlight the importance of a shared sense of purpose, a hands-on leadership style, accountability systems for quality and safety, a focus on results, and a culture of collaboration as key predictors of top performers. Similar to a past study that evaluated safety culture in AMCs, the authors emphasize that the actions of senior executives and department chairs do impact care at the bedside.