Dr. Henderson reviewing posters

Quality improvement (QI) has continued focus in residency training over the last 15 years. After graduation, nearly all internists are involved in QI efforts where they work, regardless of specialty. Many residents are interested in taking a more active role in this QI work, including leading projects now and in their future careers. Thus, we created our one-year QI Track several years ago (initially called the Hospitalist track, but we soon realized that these skills are really for everyone) to further develop these skills for our interested residents.

Residents can complete this optional track during their second or third year of residency. The goal of this track is to expand upon the residents’ knowledge and skills in QI, patient safety, hospital efficiency and function, system redesign, and leadership skills. Interested residents apply during the spring of their 1st or 2nd year, and will thus complete the track over their 2nd or 3rd year of residency.

Examples of some of the projects that our residents have completed include:

  • Projects with high impact
    • Standardizing signout
    • Improving medicine reconciliation
  • Projects with high value
    • Reducing ordering of unnecessary daily labs
    • Targeting telemetry usage
  • Projects influencing patient experience
    • Increasing POLST completion rates in the outpatient setting
    • Improving primary care assurance at transition of care
  • Projects influencing residency experience
    • Improving intern pre-rounding efficiency
    • Improving clinical documentation in the outpatient setting

Residents in the Quality Improvement (QI) Track will meet regularly with our Hospitalist faculty and key hospital/department administrators to work on these skills. Track activities include:

  • Completing a 2-week elective in Quality Improvement early in the year. The Track residents will work as a small group with key members of UC Davis Performance Excellence Center, UC Davis Hospital Medicine, also available are mentors at Kaiser, VA, palliative care, outpatient settings or subspecialty providers to develop QI projects that will then be completed over the course of the year.
  • Participating on select hospital committees relevant to interests or projects.
  • Meeting with an assigned faculty mentor from our Department QI leaders to guide them on their project and other activities, as well as mentor them on future career options.
  • Attending regular seminars led by hospital and hospitalist QI leaders on topics such as QI methods, change management skills, project management, patient safety, and transitions of patient care.

During the course of the year, we expect residents to do the following activities:

  • Develop and implement a quality improvement project (per above)
  • Present the results of their QI project at the UC Davis Medical Center Integrating Quality Symposium, Morbidity/Mortality/Quality and Safety meeting, or Medical Grand Rounds. They may also present at regional or national meetings
  • Attend seminar series and assigned committee meetings
  • Complete assigned readings and online course materials
  • Meet with their mentor regularly