NQF and The Joint Commission Announce 2013 John M. Eisenberg Patient Safety and Quality Award Winners

The National Quality Forum and The Joint Commission have announced the 2013 winners of the John M. Eisenberg Patient Safety and Quality Award, an honor that recognizes achievements in the field of patient safety.

The award, begun in 2002, is presented on national, local and individual levels. It honors John M. Eisenberg, MD, a founding member of the NQF and a former administrator at the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. Awards will be presented at NQF's annual conference Feb. 13-14.

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Honorees include:

Innovation in Patient Safety and Quality at the National Level:

  • Institute for Clinical Systems Improvement (Bloomington, Minn.)
  • Minnesota Hospital Association (St. Paul)
  • Stratis Health (Bloomington, Minn.)

The Institute for Clinical Systems Improvement is recognized for their campaign, "Reducing Avoidable Readmissions Effectively." The Campaign engaged healthcare providers across the continuum to prevent 6,000 avoidable readmissions reduce unnecessary admissions. Across Minnesota, RARE has 82 hospital participants that have prevented 5,441 readmissions collectively over the last two years.

Innovation in Patient Safety and Quality at the National Level:

  • Anthem Blue Cross (Woodland Hills, Calif.)
  • National Health Foundation (Los Angeles)
  • Hospital Association of Southern California (Los Angeles)
  • Hospital Association of San Diego & Imperial Counties (San Diego)
  • Hospital Council of Northern & Central California (Sacramento)


The above organizations are recognized for their "Patient Safety First: California Partnership for Health" initiative. The initiative brings together stakeholders from across California to improve the quality of healthcare in the state, reduce medical costs and elimnate medical errors. Perinatal care, sepsis and hospital-acquired infections are particular targets for the project. With 182 hospital participants, the California Partnership for Health initiative saved more than 3,500 lives and $63 million since its inception in 2010.

Innovation in Patient Safety and Quality at the Local Level:

  • Vidant Health (Greenville, N.C.)

Vidant Health is recognized for their systemwide patient safety training transformation after a 2006 blood event resulted in a patient death. Vidant Health's interventions created in response to the event include board literacy in quality, a transparency policy, patient-family partnerships and a focus on leader and physician engagement. As a result of the policies, the system has reduced serious safety events (down 83 percent) and HAIs (down 62 percent) and has increased optimal care in CMS' core measures (up 98 percent) and HCAHPS performance scores ( now in the top 20 percent) across Vidant's nine hospitals, 70 physician practices and ambulatory and home health/hospice services.

Individual Achievement:

  • Gail L. Warden, President Emeritus of Henry Ford Health System (Detroit).

As president and CEO, Mr. Warden oversaw creation of the Henry Ford Health System, which is now the second largest health system in Michigan. He has also served the Institute of Medicine Committee that released two fundamental reports on the state of patient safety. His contributions to the field have improved the quality of patient care both directly and through outside affiliations and service. He has been instrumental in creating the concept of health systems based on quality patient care.

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