March of Dimes, UTHealth, Children’s Memorial Hermann team up for new mother-baby safety center

University of Texas| Tue May 16 16:00:09 EDT 2017
March of Dimes, UTHealth, Children’s Memorial Hermann team up for new mother-baby safety center

The March of Dimes Perinatal Safety Center (PSC) is an innovative concept designed to serve as a blueprint for industry-leading patient safety initiatives that can be applied at hospitals across the nation.

“The March of Dimes is proud to initiate this project that helps fulfill our goal to give every baby a healthy start in life,” says Stacey D. Stewart, president of the March of Dimes. “And it’s fitting that we partner with institutions in the Texas Medical Center, where more than 25,000 babies are delivered each year.” She noted that Sabrina Midkiff, a member of the March of Dimes National Volunteer Council and a local resident, had spearheaded the effort to create the PSC.

The grant will support the development of evidence-based techniques and training to improve patient safety during pregnancy, labor, delivery, postnatal care and transition to home life. The PSC will also focus on ways to create, teach and assess safety culture among hospitals, especially pertaining to perinatal care.

“This is a tremendous opportunity for us and all those involved in the care of mothers and babies. Although having babies in hospitals is routine in this country, we understand that there are unnecessary risks when we enter a complex health care system. Patient safety has to be our No. 1 priority,” says KuoJen Tsao, M.D., lead investigator for the PSC; the Children's Fund, Inc. Distinguished Professor in Pediatric Surgery at McGovern Medical School; and co-director of The Fetal Center at Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital. “The PSC, in partnership with the March of Dimes, will serve as a framework for health care institutions to tackle key safety issues in caring for pregnant mothers and their babies.”

Tsao is the chair of the American Pediatric Surgical Association Quality and Safety Committee. He is the vice-chair of Quality and Safety for the Department of Pediatric Surgery at McGovern Medical School and led an initiative at Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital that focused on establishing a culture of safety and the use of a surgical safety checklist his team created. He has been funded by the National Institutes of Health for research into safety for neonatal surgery and has led trials in resident education in patient safety. He will now take this expertise and translate it into the PSC goals.

He noted that as an international leader in maternal-infant research and initiatives, the March of Dimes is uniquely qualified to launch the PSC initiative. “And Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital and UTHealth are two strong collaborators with outstanding reputations for providing high-quality care centered around patient safety. Together, the organizations make for a natural yet powerful partnership,” Tsao said.

McGovern Medical School at UTHealth is the only institution in the state and one of just nine centers in the entire United States to be members of both the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development’s Neonatal Research Network and the Maternal-Fetal Medicine Unit Network.

Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital, a Magnet-designated hospital that has received the prestigious international Baby-Friendly recognition, also recently received official designation from the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) as a Level IV Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), the most advanced distinction available. Level IV designation recognizes the capability of a multidisciplinary team of health care professionals, including McGovern Medical School neonatal physicians, to care for the most critically ill babies and mothers. The hospital is one of only four facilities in the state to carry the accreditation.

Co-investigators from McGovern Medical School include Eric J. Thomas, M.D., professor of medicine and director of the UTHealth-Memorial Hermann Center for Healthcare Quality and Safety; Madelene Ottosen, Ph.D., M.S.N, R.N., assistant professor in family health at the UTHealth School of Nursing; Michael T. Adler, M.D., assistant professor of obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive medicine; Clara Ward, M.D., assistant professor of maternal-fetal medicine; Mary Austin, M.D., pediatric surgeon; and Susan Wooten, M.D., assistant professor of pediatrics.

Read at Source
Related News