Tuesday, September 1, 2015

5 Tips to Help You Get from Bronze to Silver

Bronze Quality Award recipients are encouraged to continue on their journey by applying for a Silver Quality Award. While the journey from Bronze to Silver can be difficult, it’s well worth the positive outcomes your organization will gain during the process. Here are some tips to help you along the way: 
  • Use your Bronze Quality Award application as a starting point for your Silver application. Before you begin, go back and read through your Bronze application. The first part of your Silver application is the Organizational Profile, which is the basis for the Bronze criteria. However, remember that the Organizational Profile questions are different in the Silver criteria so make sure to respond to those and not simply copy and paste your Bronze application. 
  •  The Silver Quality Award level is based on the Baldrige Performance Excellence Program and is updated every two years. This year, the criteria has been updated to align with the 2015-2016 Baldrige Health Care Criteria for Performance Excellence and shows a shift in thinking that is required to move towards performance excellence. Returning applicants should be sure to respond to the 2016 Silver criteria in full; applicants who respond to old criteria will be disqualified. 
  • The Silver application is 25 pages in length. This is 20 more pages than your Bronze application. However, realize that the Silver criteria has far more requirements than the Bronze. As such, use your space carefully. While there are no requirements for splitting up the application, we do encourage you to use the first five pages for the Organizational Profile and the remaining 20-pages for your responses to the criteria. Cross-reference material between the different parts of the application, so you don’t waste space repeating material. Consider using an acronym list to save space. Just don’t forget to submit a list defining these acronyms for the Examiners at the end of your application; the acronym list does not count against the page limit. 
  • Shhh…don’t tell anyone (yet) but we have a great educational resource for Silver applicants coming out this fall. Stay tuned for more!
As always, feel free to reach out to Quality Award staff at qualityaward@ahca.org.

**Important Dates to Know**

Mid-September: Intent to Apply (ITA) process opens
November 19: Intent to Apply deadline
December 7: Applications accepted online
January 28: Bronze, Silver and Gold application deadlines

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