Surprise visit leads to reaccreditation for Yale Health Center

When four surveyors from The Joint Commission showed up unannounced at the new Yale Health Center on 55 Lock St., on Jan. 10, the administration quickly allowed them access to the brand new state-of-the art facility that recently marked its opening.

After three days of intensive reviews — such as interviewing staff members, investigating clinical and administrative departments, and reviewing policies and staffing levels — the surveyors gave Yale Health Center an enthusiastic stamp of approval for reaccreditation in all three of the areas they were assessing: Ambulatory Care, Mental Health and Inpatient Care.

“I am very happy to report that Yale Health successfully completed our first survey in our new home,” says Dr. Paul Genecin, director of the Yale Health Center. “The surveyors said they were impressed by the commitment and dedication of our entire staff. Our surveyors repeatedly observed that our staff members take pride in their work, that they are experts in their fields, and that they evince a strong sense of ownership of the patient experience.”

Joint Commission accreditation is recognized nationwide as a symbol of quality that reflects commitment to high standards of clinical quality and performance. Only about 20% of ambulatory clinics are accredited in some way — “and the Joint Commission standards continue to be the most challenging,” notes Genecin.

The surveyors investigated every clinical department as well as many administrative areas, reviewing a large cross-section of the Yale Health Center’s hundreds of standards, policies and practices containing thousands of elements of performance. They explored many facets of patient care, ranging from triage and scheduling to clinic flow, medication safety, referrals and results reporting. They scrutinized staffing levels, training processes, communications practices and measurement of outcomes. The surveyors also explored the electronic medical record system, and examined the many performance improvement initiatives and practices for using data to improve quality.

“In all these areas, Yale Health Center received enthusiastic and positive feedback as well as helpful suggestions,” notes Genecin.

— By Karen Peart

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Karen N. Peart:, 203-432-1326