QIOs in Action

Immunizations are critically important in protecting older adults against serious and sometimes deadly diseases, such as the influenza virus or shingles.
Diabetes is a leading cause of blindness among adults in the United States. Learn how one Quality Innovation Network-Quality Improvement Organization is adapting existing diabetes self-management education curriculum to make diabetes self-management more accessible to people with eyesight limitations.
Patient advocate Bill Gossard has experienced the burden—and sometimes harm—that multiple medications can place on patients and their families. Gossard’s wife Helen took 18 medications every day toward the end of her life, and four different physicians prescribed those medications.
Great Plains Quality Innovation Network—the QIN-QIO serving Kansas, Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota—is working to address the burden of antipsychotic medication on dementia patients in nursing homes. Here’s how they are implementing interventions and including families in the decision-making process.
Native Americans are at an increased risk for diabetes. HSAG—the QIN-QIO serving Arizona, California, Florida, Ohio, and the U.S. Virgin Islands—recently launched its first diabetes self-management education (DSME) training classes in Northern California to help spread best practices for diabetes care among the area’s Native American population.
In January 2017, Telligen—the Quality Innovation Network-Quality Improvement Organization serving Colorado, Iowa and Illinois—completed a one-year project in partnership with CORHIO to learn how better access to complete medication lists in health information exchanges could improve the quality of patient care and reduce adverse drug events.
Telligen—the QIN-QIO serving Colorado, Iowa and Illinois—participated in 2016 on a national effort to help reduce high blood pressure among Medicare beneficiaries.
Obtaining prescriptions immediately following a hospital stay can be difficult due to patients’ delicate health conditions. For people from rural areas, getting necessary medications may be particularly challenging due to the lack of easy access to pharmacies. These barriers to access may prevent some patients from getting the medications they need to improve their health and well-being.
Although nearly 29.1 million people in the United States—approximately 9.3 percent of the general population—have diabetes, many patients are not aware of the best ways to manage and treat the disease. Di­abetes Self Management Education (DSME) is an evidence-based intervention for empowering individuals with diabetes to take an active role in managing their disease.  
The use of antipsychotic drugs has been linked to a handful of lasting side effects, including weight gain, type II diabetes, hyperlipidemia and depression, among others. Antipsychotics are occasionally used to treat behavioral problems in older patients with aggressive mental illnesses, such as Alzheimer’s and dementia. However, these prescriptions often do more harm than good – significantly increasing the likelihood of patient depression and mortality.
Medication reconciliation is an important step in the care continuum that can easily be overlooked. Telligen, the QIN-QIO serving Colorado, Illinois, and Iowa, is leveraging health IT to increase the sharing of medication information as a patient moves from one care setting to the next.
Facing the possibility of serious financial penalties, a Minnesota clinic engaged the Lake Superior Quality Innovation Network to improve its workflow for quality reporting.
Healthcare-associated infections are serious medical conditions, especially for older adults. Faced with an outbreak in Alaska, Mountain–Pacific Quality Health, the Quality Innovation Network-Quality Improvement Organization (QIN-QIO) for Alaska took action, working with local hospital staff to significantly reduce the number of infections.
In the largely rural state of North Dakota, Medicare claims data does not provide a complete picture of true adult immunization rates, as it excludes those for whom the roster billing method is used – such as all rural health clinics. The Great Plains Quality Innovation Network (QIN) – the QIN-QIO for Kansas, Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota – sought to ensure complete tracking, documentation and reporting of data, and the use of best practices in improving adult immunization rates. Ultimately, the QIN aims to have all immunization providers – including those located in rural areas – included in its interventions to improve immunization rates, which will implemented by Fall 2016.  
Health Services Advisory Group, a Quality Innovation Network-Quality Improvement Organization (QIN-QIO), is taking an innovative approach to conducting diabetes education workshops, using translators to reach seniors in their native-languages, including Cantonese, Mandarin, Hindi, and Gujarati, and, most recently, Swahili.
The TMF Quality Innovation Network-Quality Improvement Organization (QIN-QIO) is using the American Heart Association’s Check.Change.Control blood pressure program to help lower blood pressure within the St. Louis area. The program brings together local participants to talk about blood pressure and how to better monitor and manage it.