By: Megan Tolley, Manager of Cancer Outcomes, Novant Health Cancer Institute
Optimizing care in your practice is a continuous effort and you need real-time metrics to determine the areas where you can and should take steps to make quality improvements. Novant Health Cancer Institute became a subscriber to CancerLinQ’s platform, and it has helped us do just that, as well as streamline our reporting for Quality Oncology Practice Initiative (QOPI®) Certification.
Novant Health has 15 hospitals and more than 350 physician practices offering advanced medical treatment in North Carolina. Our cancer institute practices serve both North Carolina and South Carolina. I have been with Novant for 16 years and have worked in the cancer institute for the past 10, starting out as a data analyst for quality improvement initiatives, and have since moved into my current role of managing our accreditation programs.
ASCO’s QOPI Certification Program
ASCO’s QOPI Certification Program is the gold standard for recognizing high-quality care for outpatient hematology-oncology practices within the United States. However, getting the process started for applying for the three-year certification requires a manual abstraction of data and it can take up to a year to build the report that you need. A nurse practitioner in our Winston-Salem practices managed the certification for practices in that area, but we did not have the bandwidth to pursue accreditation for the entire cancer institute.
Fortunately, CancerLinQ’s SmartLinQ™ QOPI Certification Program (QCP) Pathway helped automate this process, saving countless hours of time. The SmartLinQ QCP Pathway allows practices to automatically track, monitor, and submit their quality score through the CancerLinQ platform in place of manual QOPI abstraction. Through this pathway, we were able to submit our overall quality score for pathway measures and quickly move on to the application and on-site survey process. This year, we achieved certification and can use the QCP Pathway to maintain this accreditation and apply for re-certification.
Improvement in Quality of Care
CancerLinQ has also enabled to us to find areas where we can make improvements within our practice beyond QOPI Certification. For example, a patient’s performance status, or ability to care for themself, daily activity, and physical ability, is a critical aspect of their care and we saw the process for documenting it was taking too long in our EHR system. We worked with our vendor and the CancerLinQ team to triage the process with the care team and thanks in part to this new approach, we have seen compliance with this measure increase in recent months.
The platform itself is easy to use and requires very little work from me. I can log in, take a look at our practice’s dashboard, quickly assess how we are performing on quality measures, and share with providers as appropriate. Practices also receive an email every Monday letting them know how the platform is performing and if there is any work required on their end. I also cannot speak highly enough of the CancerLinQ team, especially Zikki Munyao. He and his colleagues are great to work with and always finds solutions on any issue we are facing.
As someone who is responsible for improving quality for their practice, I can honestly say that CancerLinQ platform does exactly what I need. If you are a practice looking to optimize your quality of care, I strongly you to encourage you to check it out.