Dear Reader

Help Spread the Word!: 

The Quality Improvement Organization (QIO) Program is preparing to undergo a major transformation, a change that will further enhance the quality of services delivered to Medicare beneficiaries. Beginning August 1, 2014, the QIO Program will move to a new functional model in which one group of QIOs will handle quality of care complaints and another group of QIOs will work with providers and stakeholders to improve the quality of health care for targeted health conditions. 

Beneficiary and Family Centered Care (BFCC)-QIOs will manage all beneficiary complaints, quality of care reviews, EMTALA, and other types of case reviews to ensure consistency in the review process while taking into consideration local factors important to beneficiaries and their families. These BFCC-QIOs are knowledgeable about local issues and will provide a seamless transition in the case review process.

Quality Innovation Network (QIN)-QIOs will be responsible for working with providers and the community on multiple, data-driven quality initiatives to improve patient safety, reduce harm, engage patients and families and improve clinical care at their local and regional levels. These QIN-QIOs are skilled in transforming physician practices, employing lean methodology, assisting with value-based purchasing programs and developing innovative approaches to quality improvement. The new QIN-QIOs and BFCC-QIOs are listed in this special focus issue. 

We applaud and thank all QIOs that have worked tirelessly over the years to support clinical quality improvement activities. Although the structure of the QIO Program is changing, our commitment to driving rapid, large-scale change that puts patients first and contributes to better patient care, better population health and lower costs through improvement, remains the same. 

We encourage you to visit the new QIO Program website to learn more about these exciting changes. For your convenience, this special focus issue of QIO News features a listing of the new BFCC-QIOs and the QIN-QIOs. 

Jean Moody-Williams, R.N., MPP
Director, Quality Improvement Group
Center for Clinical Standards and QualityCenters for Medicare & Medicaid Services