Congratulations to Grey Bruce Health Services (GBHS) the first hospital organization in Canada to achieve ISO 15189 Plus™ Diagnostic Imaging Accreditation status from the Institute for Quality Management in Healthcare (IQMH).
Accreditation to ISO 15189 Plus™ is a mark of excellence recognized around the world. IQMH accreditation embraces the quality principles of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). We assess the ability of a facility to perform diagnostic imaging with formal recognition of this competence through accreditation to our ISO 15189 Plus™ requirements. It also provides facilities with the tools they need to standardize their processes, address diminishing resources, mitigate risk and drive continual quality improvement; ultimately improving patient safety.
GBHS is a multi-site organization operating six hospitals in the Grey Bruce region. The Owen Sound site is the largest hospital offering regional services with affiliated sites located in Meaford, Markdale, Southampton, Wiarton, and Lion’s Head.
The scope of accreditation at GBHS includes the following diagnostic imaging services:
- Bone Mineral Densitometry
- Computed tomography (CT)
- General Radiography
- Interventional Radiology
- Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
- Nuclear Medicine (NM)
Anne Robertson, recently retired Director of the Medical Imaging and Cardiology Diagnostic Services at GBHS, was confident the staff would meet the challenge of being assessed against ISO 15189 Plus™ international standards. Anne had the following to say about the process:
The Medical Imaging Department of GBHS has consistently focused on maintaining the highest quality and following established Standards of Practice. When an opportunity arose for our staff to participate in an established accreditation program evaluation, we decided to be one of the first in Ontario to challenge ourselves.
Our staff members were a little reluctant in the beginning because the task was onerous, but the department leaders ensured that they had all of the tools required to be successful. As each area moved through the process, the staff reconfirmed that they were doing a good job and recognized that the IQMH process was allowing them to close the gaps and make sure that instructions for all staff were easily interpreted and complete.
One of the most intimidating parts of the process was that a team of six of our peers came to all parts of our department, including the peripheral sites, and closely observed our procedures for a complete week.
Our staff rose to the challenge and discovered that they could be proud of their achievements; they were consistently using best practices and the confidence gained from participating in accreditation was rewarding.
The overall experience was rewarding and the successful outcome allows the staff the opportunity to inform the patients that they are getting the best possible care, and "bragging rights” for being the first in the province to be awarded ISO 15189 Plus™ Diagnostic Imaging Accreditation).
Director Medical Imaging & Cardiology Diagnostic Services at GBHS, Kathy Beattie, stated the following about the process:
It was wonderful to see the collaboration with the frontline staff and the team leads. By handing the processes and workflows over to the staff to work on together, I felt it gave them a sense of ownership and involvement in the process. It was also great to recognize that we had a solid foundation even prior to commencing the IQMH process and now to look at how far we have come, we should really be proud. It was a lot of work; however, it was extremely satisfying to see how aligned our processes were with provincial best practices.
Michele Best, Charge Technologist and Clinical Coordinator at GBHS shared the following feedback:
Our confidence is definitely elevated. This accreditation was validation of the excellent service we already provide and ensures we will continue to do so.
The IQMH accreditation assessment team was composed of professional peers selected to provide the technical expertise for the entire scope of the services.
- An amazing week spent with great people. A very positive experience.
- Staff were engaged, positive and proud of the patient services they provide.
- I came away very focused and energized by the experience.
- What an experience! An amazing learning opportunity. I look at my department with a new vision.
Staff and assessors celebrated with cake at completion of the summation meeting!
Congratulations and thank you to GBHS Medical Imaging services for being the first to achieve ISO 15189 Plus™ Diagnostic Imaging Accreditation.