Wednesday, December 12, 2012

'Tis the Season: Review Goals, Set Targets

This post is part of the AHCA/NCAL Quality Initiative Quarterly Update - Fourth Quarter 2012.  

Many organizations are preparing for year-end Quality Assurance (QA) meetings and the process of setting 2013 QA targets. Yearly goal-setting sessions provide your team with a clear direction and a focus on outcome-driven results.

That’s why AHCA and NCAL each set measurable targets with the Quality Initiative.

Quality improvement research shows that organizations that set clear and specific targets are more likely to achieve their desired results.

The first step in this process is to look at 2012 data and trends. What goals did you set for 2012? Were you successful in achieving them? Did you take on any unplanned projects or new programs? How did they affect your results? Data is critical to measure progress on your goals. Facilities have access to many reports, such as financial, Quality Improvement (QI), Quality Measures (QM), resident and staff satisfaction surveys, turnover reports, grievance logs and risk management logs to list a few.

As you review your data, some key questions to ask are:
  • Did these trends or results have a negative or positive affect?
  • What type of correlations can we see?
  • Did we accomplish all of the goals? Which goals did we not hit and why?
  • What were the barriers to reaching these targets?
After you have reviewed your trends for 2012, determine which items you want to carry over to 2013, and what new priorities you want to set. Establish new goals for 2013 using the same data sources that you used in the 2012 review. Consider all aspects of care and services, not just clinical outcomes. Setting goals that will challenge your team but are realistically achievable is vital to success. Each goal that you set should be time-specific and measureable.

To start the process, consider:
  • What targets did we miss in 2012 that we want to reach in 2013?
  • Which successes from 2012 do we want to build on and be sure to sustain in 2013?
  • What are our most critical opportunities for improvement?
  • What data are we going to use for trending? QI reports? QM Reports? Logs?
  • Why are these goals important to us as an organization?
  • How are we going to measure our progress on these goals?
There are many free resources that can assist during your goal setting sessions.
  • SMART goal worksheets assist in setting realistic goals
  • PDSA work sheets outline the process for each goal and provide a frame work. This can also be a good tool to use during the review process.
  • LTC Trend Tracker (a free AHCA member benefit) provides up to 12 years of historical data for trending purposes.
  • Advancing Excellence provides numerous data collection and tracking tools that will help you monitor progress in real time, as well as resources to facilitate your quality improvement activities in areas tied to both organizational and clinical goals.
Now that you have reviewed 2012 and prepared for 2013, make sure you have plans in place to achieve buy-in and review progress regularly. Make sure the goals your team set are visible and understood by everyone in the organization. Keep them front and center to ensure a shared and continued focus. Make this the first agenda item in each of your 2013 QA meetings. This will allow the team to stay on track during the year and provides a plan for each of your 2013 meetings.

To enhance your organization’s ability to achieve the best possible results, set realistic and SMART goals, use data to determine trends, and look at all aspects of your care and services during your goal planning session.

What goals will you set in 2013?

1 comment:

  1. I like the topic which has been discuss by you,i want to say thanks to you for sharing with me such a nice info.I am also quite interested to see your upcoming post for home care management system so please keep writing.