School of Health Sciences Holds Symposium on Healthcare Quality Improvement at Beth Israel Medical Center

Date: October 21, 2013
Occupational therapy students and faculty participating in symposium, left to right: Keith Koppenhoefer, Samantha Greenbaum, Julianna Breviario, Jennifer Rogan, Deena Jacobs, P'nina Globman and Chairperson and Director of Occupational Therapy Dr. Stephanie Dapice Wong.
Occupational therapy students and faculty participating in symposium, left to right: Keith Koppenhoefer, Samantha Greenbaum, Julianna Breviario, Jennifer Rogan, Deena Jacobs, P'nina Globman and Chairperson and Director of Occupational Therapy Dr. Stephanie Dapice Wong.
Media Contact:

Barbara Franklin
Director of Communications
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Barbara.franklin@touro.edu

New York, N.Y. - They came from physical therapy, occupational therapy, nursing, physician assistant and speech and language pathology programs – about seventy-five Touro College School of Health Sciences students and faculty in all – to Beth Israel Medical Center in Manhattan recently, to engage in a panel discussion and breakout groups on the topic of “Quality Improvement (‘QI’)” and how it is used by healthcare teams in a variety of settings. 

The occasion was the first annual “Interprofessional Education (IPE) Symposium” on healthcare quality, and the panelists were Touro faculty members Amanda Foglia, MS, CCC/SLP; Scott Gould, PA-C, MS; Elliot Katz, MA, OTR/L; Ted Marks, DPT, CCS; and from Beth Israel Medical Center Marie Moss, RN, MPH, CIC, a nurse and infection control specialist; and Kathleen Kearney, NP, a nurse practitioner for intervention cardiology.

“The School saw this event as an opportunity to engage a multidisciplinary audience around the important topic of health care quality and the various roles we play,” said Nathan Boucher, director of graduate education, assistant professor in the Physician Assistant Program, and moderator of the panel discussion. “IPE is a Touro College priority area and is a national movement,” said Mr. Boucher, who will be chairing the new Interprofessional Education Committee for the School. 

“The primary goal was to bring various health professions together to foster collaboration,” added Jill Horbacewicz, chair of the Physical Therapy Department and a member of the multidisciplinary planning committee that organized the event.

At the panel discussion, the group talked about what quality improvement meant to them and gave examples of the quality improvement process at work.  In the four breakout sessions that followed, students and faculty representing each of the health science programs were divided into separate rooms and presented with a case study of a fictional patient in one of four practice settings: the emergency department, the acute care setting, inpatient rehabilitation, and an outpatient facility. Each group then discussed patient care and quality improvement challenges in their assigned setting.

“Quality improvement, it has been shown, improves outcomes for patients and healthcare workers, reduces errors, and improves efficiency and communication between patients, providers and third party payers,” Mr. Boucher said. “It can and should take place in all health care settings.”