Quality & Safety
Patient Care, Quality and Safety
At Duke Children’s Hospital & Health Center, we pledge to provide you with the highest quality care and maintain a safe environment for you to receive care.
If for any reason you have concerns about the care provided, we encourage you to discuss this with your provider, the management of the unit or clinic where you received care, or the Patient Visitor Relations representative.
To contact the Department of Accreditation & Patient Safety:
Department of Accreditation & Patient Safety
Duke University Helath System
Box 3612 DUMC
Durham, NC 27710
Promoting Safety and Quality Care
At Duke Children's, we place a premium on patient safety and the delivery of quality patient care. Here are a few examples of ways we strive to improve your health and provide safe, quality care.
Evidence-Based Medicine (EBM)
Researchers at Duke Children's Hospital & Health Center are conducting hundreds of clinical trials and outcomes studies each year to prove which medications, procedures, and devices are most effective. The results of these research studies are then translated at the bedside and included in quality pediatric patient care.
To prevent medical errors, Duke Children's physicians and nurses are taking advantage of the latest technological advancement, such as:
- Computerized physician order entry (CPOE), an electronic system that replaces hand-written physician orders to improve order accuracy and provides order advisers to guide prescribing decisions.
- Risk and Safety Management Alert System (RASMAS), a Web-based subscription service that provides comprehensive notification of product alerts and supports distribution and management of the health system’s response to the alerts.
Engaging Patients and Families in Safety
At Duke Children's, we partner with patients and families to ensure safe passage through the health care experience.
Patients and families are asked to provide their health care team with a complete list of medications -- prescription, over-the-counter, and nutritional supplements -- on admission and during clinic appointments.
Patients and families are asked to participate in decisions about their care through discussions with their health care team, in addition to completing an advance directive.
Patient Advocacy Program
Patients or family members with concerns about their health care experience are encouraged to express it to their health care team or to contact a patient advocate at 919-681-2020.
If the experience occurred in the outpatient arena, the clinic or service can provide you with the contact information for the patient advocate.
Each physician group at Duke Children's has one or more teams that focus on clinical quality and patient safety.
These teams are led in many instances by pairs of physicians and nursing/administrative leaders. The teams conduct patient safety rounds in conjunction with their organization’s executives interviewing staff and physicians about their perspectives on clinical quality and patient safety.
Issues are discussed at the team meetings along with concerns identified through other avenues. Priorities are established and plans to resolve issues are developed and executed. Each team’s activities are reported through the performance improvement infrastructure at their organization and up to the governing body for the organization.
Quality measures for hospitals are available to help you choose where to seek care. Duke Children's Hospital & Health Center participates in many quality measure programs to help you stay informed. Below you will find descriptions and links to of these programs.
Hospital Quality Alliance
This group is a collaboration between the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and organizations that represent hospitals, doctors, employers, accrediting organizations, other federal agencies, and the public.
It tracks 20 measures of care. The measures reflect recommended treatments for heart attack (acute myocardial infarction), heart failure, pneumonia, and surgical infection prevention. Data is gathered from the patient’s medical record.
The Joint Commission
The Joint Commission (TJC) is an independent, not-for-profit organization that evaluates and accredits more than 15,000 health care organizations and programs in the United States.
All Duke University Health System entities are accredited by the TJC. The data available from TJC on quality and safety is collected through on-site inspections and from the patients’ medical records.
Leapfrog is an initiative driven by health care purchasers such as employer groups. It reports on four hospital measures: computerized physician order entry, evidence-based hospital referrals, high-risk treatments, and safe practices.
Duke University Hospital and Durham Regional Hospital report on these measures. These data are generated through the hospitals’ response to a survey provided by Leapfrog. Some survey questions require data collection from the patients’ medical records.
NC Hospital Quality Report
This site from the North Carolina Center for Hospital Quality and Patient Safety and the NC Hospital Association reports on quality measures for hospitals in North Carolina and lets you compare hospitals within a region.
NC Hospital Quality Report measures reflect recommended treatments for heart attack, heart failure, pneumonia, and surgical infection prevention.
U.S.News & World Report
U.S.News & World report ranks hospitals in 17 specialties instead of procedures. Rankings are based on data, reputation, mortality ratio, and reputational specialties.
HealthGrades gathers information on hospitals and physicians. It provides quality ratings for 28 procedures in hospitals.