Medical School

Quality Improvement and Patient Safety Pathway

Quality Improvement and Patient Safety (QuIPS) provides students with the core principles and skills necessary to understand and analyze the systems-based aspects of patient care.

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About the Pathway
Quality Improvement and Patient Safety (QuIPS) provides students with the core principles and skills necessary to understand and analyze the systems-based aspects of patient care, to actively engage in quality improvement work, and to enhance patient safety with the of achieving the best possible health outcomes for patients.
Pathway Director
Cassie Ferguson, MD
Assistant Professor, Pediatrics
Goals and Competencies

Goal:

The Quality Improvement and Patient Safety (QuIPS) scholarly pathway at The Medical College of Wisconsin provides students with an important set of skills that will complement any field of medicine. Students will learn the core principles and skills necessary to understand and analyze the systems-based aspects of patient care, actively engage in work to improve the quality of patient care and enhance patient safety while focusing on the goal of achieving the best possible health outcomes for patients and for populations.  

Pathway Competencies and Objectives:

Year 1  

  • Define safety in systems and human factors science 
  • Describe the concept of process mapping in the health care setting 
  • Create an overall process map 
  • Explain the importance of systems design in decreasing the potential for human error 
  • Evaluate the strength of different types of QI interventions 
  • Demonstrate through role play the skills needed to work in a multidisciplinary team 
  • Explain why physicians are integral to QI efforts 
  • Demonstrate through a simulated patient interaction the skills needed to recognize a medical emergency, ask for appropriate resources, and identify systems-based and process-based failures

Year 2

  • Describe the interactions between systems of care and their impact on a patient with a chronic illness  
  • Rate the understanding of patient experience as valuable in health care systems design  
  • Recognize the impact of an adverse event on the patient, patient’s family, and the patient’s physicians  
  • Define ‘root cause analysis’ and explain its importance to process improvement  
  • List three process improvement techniques and describe how each technique attempts to influence changes associated with systems  
  • Balance one’s own responsibilities and goals for patient care with the role of a team member in shared decision-making  
  • Define ‘medical hierarchy’ and ‘culture of safety’  
  • Explain and list examples of how the medical hierarchy may prevent medical students from reporting and preventing errors during clerkships  
  • Describe how a medical student might bring an error or ‘near miss’ to the attention of a supervisor  
  • List and practice three skills that can improve resilience and prevent burnout in medical school  
  • Describe some of the challenges of engaging physicians in QI efforts  
  • Demonstrate how to disclose an adverse event to a standardized patient following a simulated patient interaction  

Year 3

  • Explain effective care, supply-sensitive care, and preference-sensitive care as defined by the Dartmouth Atlas of Health Care  
  • Describe the misuse of preference-sensitive care as it relates to the care of patients with benign prostatic hypertrophy  
  • Examine the relationship between patient satisfaction and health care utilization and expenditures  
  • Explain the origin of the SQUIRE publication guidelines and identify how a group of authors used the guidelines to publish their work  
  • Explain how to choose the appropriate statistical process control chart for a particular set of data  
  • Interpret and critique quality improvement research  
  • Identify and critique the components of the Affordable Care Act related to quality improvement  
  • Describe important aspects of physician resilience 
  • List three strategies to engage health care providers in QI efforts 
  • Lead a simulated patient interaction and help first- and second-year QuIPS pathway students identify systems-based and process-based failures  

 

Examples of Non-core Activities

Refer to the QuIPS Non-core Activities (PDF) for additional information.

  • AHRQ case reviews - online
  • TeamSTEPPS training
  • Joint Quality Steering Committee
  • Patient Safety Committee
  • Milwaukee County Patient Safety Collaborative
  • Infection Control
  • Patient shadowing
Additional Resources and Information

Additional Resources and Information
The Quality Improvement and Patient Safety Pathway offers three themes: 

  • Learning to optimize systems of care and functions as a member of the healthcare teams 
  • Principles of Safety and Medical Error 
  • Development of Quality Improvement skills