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QIC Health and Community Services Standards 7th Edition has launched!

Following 18 months of consultation with community representatives Australia‐wide, Quality Innovation Performance Limited (QIP) has launched a new set of industry Standards to enhance key areas of service delivery and operational processes within community organisations across all States and Territories. The QIC Health and Community Services Standards 7th Edition support a wide range of organisations to improve consumer and community engagement, diversity and cultural appropriateness, management systems, governance and service delivery, while committing to a cycle of continuous quality improvement.

QIP has undertaken a comprehensive review, consultation and pilot process to ensure the new 7th Edition Standards are reflective of industry trends and easy to interpret while being applicable to the environments that community services operate within.

Dr Stephen Clark, Group Chief Executive of QIP, said that the new QIC Standards have a strong foundation with significant input from the sector to ensure best practice and quality focused outcomes for Australian community health and service providers and their local communities.

“The QIC Standards have a long history and reputation for improving whole‐of‐organisation outcomes across the Australian community services sector, evolving from the Community Health Accreditation and Standards Program (CHASP) first implemented in 1996.

“The QIC Standards 7th Edition have leveraged off the strengths of the 6th Edition, best practice processes and the significant contributions made from engaging with a range of community sector experts and organisations including NGOs, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Services, Aged Care Services and a range of Social Services Agencies.

“The Standards have been developed by the sector for the sector, encompassing a more contemporary structure, supporting community health and service providers to increase accountability to their consumers, staff, relevant regulators and their local communities” said Dr Clark.

Currently more than 300 organisations across Australia hold QIP accreditation against the QIC Standards. The new QIC Standards 7th Edition will support a wide range of community service and health organisations to increase the overall quality of their organisation. Achievement of QIP accreditation against the QIC Standards takes a commitment to quality improvement, team work, a drive to build organisational capacity and a focus on enhancing provision of service and care for consumers.

For further information regarding QIP accreditation against the QIC Standards 7th Edition contact the QIP team at communityinfo@qip.com.au or click here.

AGPAL & QIP Excellence Awards – nominations now open for AGPAL & QIP Clients

The AGPAL & QIP Excellence Awards recognise AGPAL and QIP accredited practices, organisations and/or services that constantly go above and beyond to implement and embed quality improvements, with teams that love to innovate, demonstrate dedicated approaches to patient and consumer services and/or care, and have a clear understanding of relevant industry standards.

Each award category recognises an Excellence Recipient and a Highly Commended Recipient, announced at our AGPAL & QIP 2018 Conference Gala Dinner on Friday, 18 May 2018.

The QIP award categories include:

  • QIP Chair Health Service of the Year 2015 – 2017
  • QIP Community Organisation of the Year 2015 – 2017

If your practice, organisation or service is ready to be recognised for your deserving efforts, we encourage you to read about each of our available award categories, associated eligibility and assessment criteria and to start compiling your nomination ready for submission!

Visit www.agpalqipconference.com.au/awards, our AGPAL & QIP 2018 Conference website for more information. While you’re there, be sure to register your attendance for the entirety of this exciting 2018 event!

The AGPAL Group of Companies strongly supports marriage equality, diversity and inclusion across Australia

In September 2016, the AGPAL Group of Companies joined the movement to legalise marriage equality by submitting an official of letter of support via AustralianMarriageEquality.org. There are now 1,719 Australian organisations like ours supporting this national campaign.

The Treasurer, under the Census and Statistics Act 1905, directed the Australian Statistician to collect and publish statistical information from all eligible Australians on the Commonwealth Electoral Roll, about their views on whether the law should be changed to allow same-sex couples to marry. Now more than ever it is important to make your voice heard and VOTE YES in support of marriage equality, recognising diversity and ensuring inclusivity across our Australian communities.

From 12 September 2017, the Australian Bureau of Statistics will begin to send out marriage equality postal surveys, and all survey responses must be received by 6pm, 7 November 2017. Voting YES in this survey is a crucial step to achieving marriage equality in Australia.

The AGPAL Group of Companies letter of support for marriage equality, September 2016

“We, the AGPAL Group of Companies, write to express our strong support for marriage equality.

With company values which embrace and celebrate diversity, partnership and integrity, our staff and Board Directors believe in inclusivity, fair opportunities and entitlements for every one of our Australian community members, no matter their differences.

We recognise the right of our lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) employees, surveyors, clients, stakeholders, family members and friends to live and work free of prejudice and discrimination. This includes the right to marry the partner of their choice.

Australians are increasingly supportive of marriage equality, with a recent Crosby Textor survey showing seventy‐two percent, believe same sex couples should be allowed to marry. We believe this overwhelming level of support should be reflected with legal change.

Globally, over twenty countries have passed laws to allow same sex marriage, including countries that are culturally similar to ours like New Zealand, the United States of America, Canada, and Great Britain. These countries did so with lower support for marriage equality than Australia is seeing right now. On May 22 2015, the Republic of Ireland held a referendum to sanction same sex marriage. A Yes vote was supported by the Government, all major political parties and the voters themselves. On June 26 2015, the U.S. Supreme court returned a judgement in favour of legalising same sex marriage across all 50 states. These two events see Australia isolated among countries with English as a first language.

By delivering the Rainbow Tick Accreditation Program we actively encourage organisations to address inequities faced by many LGBTI people by assisting health, community and human services to understand and respond to the needs of their LGBTI consumers. Granting marriage equality in Australia will further support our LGBTI community members to live with the same freedoms as everybody else, while being granted the respect and fairness they deserve.

We strongly support marriage equality.”

For more information about becoming accredited against the Rainbow Tick Standards, please visit: www.qip.com.au/standards/rainbow-tick-standards/

QIC Standards 7th Edition pilot a success

QIC Health and Community Services Standards 7th Edition is currently under development, with the official release to be announced soon.

Through engagement  with QIP community stakeholders on expert panels, QIP Assessors and QIP community organisations involved in the pilot process, a large amount of feedback has been collated and interpreted to formulate a close to final draft.

The past 18 months of reviews, consultations and development have ensured the new Standards 7th Edition are reflective of industry trends and easy to interpret while being applicable to the environments that community services and health organisations operate in.

 “The draft 7th Edition was seen as a definite improvement over the 6th Edition… A significant improvement in terms of structure and legibility.”
David Elkington – Salvation Army, Australian Southern Territory.

A restructure of the QIC Core Standards has resulted in a reduction to the number of standards, which cover 21 Criterion and 93 Indicator.

The simplification includes:

  1. Governance
  2. Management Systems
  3. Consumers and community engagement
  4. Diversity and cultural appropriateness
  5. Service delivery

“These standards are clearer and have less duplication than the previous edition”
Isobel Moase – Torres and Cape Hospital and Health Service.

To ensure the Core Standards are strengthened in their new format, several areas of change have been implemented between the Standards 6th and 7th Editions, including:

  • A strengthened focus on governance, separating this area out from management systems
  • Separation of knowledge management and information management for clarity of purpose
  • Consideration for planning at a population level and individual level
  • A NEW consumer and community engagement standard to place greater emphasis on access, advocacy, engagement, feedback including complaints, information, participation in review, designing and planning, privacy and rights.
  • A NEW diversity and cultural appropriateness standard to reflect the importance of this topic within modern society and to place stronger accountability, consideration and measures around making improvements within organisational settings.

Once the Core Standards are released as an update to the current 6th edition Standards, the new QIC Clinical Standards will follow to specifically assist the varied needs identified within community health services.

With a range of positive feedback from the pilot participants, it’s clear to see that the updated 7th Edition will be a welcomed addition to the accreditation process. Be sure to keep an eye on the QIP website, social media channels and email communications for further updates to the QIC 7th Edition Standards.

Read our full article, distributed as part of our QIP Community Insight (QIP Community client e-newsletter), to find out more about the changes and feedback from the pilot participants by CLICKING HERE.

For any queries relating to accreditation against the QIC Standards. contact our QIP team on 1300 820 152 or email communityinfo@qip.com.au

Urban Indigenous Health Promotion: Improving Referral Pathways in the Outer East – Inaugural Russell Renhard Scholarship Recipient, Inspiro project update

Inspiro Community Health Service was awarded the inaugural QIP Russell Renhard Scholarship for their project Making Better Connections – Urban Indigenous Health Promotion: Improving Referral Pathways in the Outer East in late 2012.

Barb Dobson, Inspiro’s Project Manager and Aboriginal Health Promotion Officer,
presenting on the project at the recent QIP Community Networking Event in Melbourne

Located on the ancestral lands of the Wurundjeri peoples, Inspiro is a not-for-profit community health service dedicated to providing health, wellbeing and dental services to the Yarra Ranges community in Victoria. Key services sites are situated at Lilydale and Tecoma, while a new redevelopment will provide expanded services at Belgrave.

With our 2017 QIP Russell Renhard Scholarship recipient (Annie North Ltd) and runner up (Cobaw Community Health) commencing their planned projects, our team would like to take the time reflect on and celebrate the achievements, learnings and outcomes made by Inspiro as a result of their Scholarship initiative.

Inspiro’s Making Better Connections Project was developed in response to a request from the local Aboriginal Controlled Community Organisation, Healesville Indigenous Services Community Organisation (HICSA). The overall goal of the Making Better Connections Project was to improve access to culturally responsive health services and contribute to better health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community members in the Outer East Melbourne area of Healesville and surrounds. The Department of Health and Human Services divides the state of Victoria into seven regions with Healesville and surrounds belonging to the Eastern Metropolitan Region.

The project had two main aims: to translate the theory and principle of cultural respect into practice which supports improved access to local health services; and, to improve culturally appropriate referral systems for Aboriginal residents from Healesville and the surrounding areas.

Project development, implementation, evaluation and reporting were constructed to reflect local Aboriginal cultural values and revolved around four essential project design elements: foundational core cultural values of respect, caring and sharing, a participatory action research methodology modified to incorporate dadirri principles and a systems approach to service improvement.

The Making Better Connections Project has achieved a range of outcomes both intended and unintended. Activities and dialogue connected to the project have also contributed to other projects underway in the Eastern region. The current project has influenced thinking at the strategic level, raised options for project collaboration at the regional level, and contributed to a range of outcomes for the local community.

The research identified a range of activities that could be implemented to improve access to services for local Aboriginal community members, varying from local to regional environments.

Key project achievements encompassed:

  • Responsiveness
  • Importance of Place
  • Translating Cultural Respect
  • Improved Pathways
  • Information Access
  • Resource Tensions
  • Local Service Communication

NOTE: For specific details regarding each achievements, CLICK HERE to download the full Making Better Connections Urban Indigenous Health Promotion: Improving Referral Pathways in the Outer East project report.

In addition to these achievements, there were three tiers identified, highlighting opportunities for action to be taken to improve access to local and regional health service for local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community members in Healesville and surrounds.

One area of particular mention, was the identification of need for sustained and cohesive efforts to both improve and embed cultural competence at organisational and practitioner levels. Translating the theory of cultural respect into effective practice implies, and requires, cultural competence. To be effective and visible, cultural competence needs to be embedded in the organisations providing service to local community.

While the Closing the Health Gap initiative contributed to a range of positive changes, there remains a need for organisations to systemically embed cultural competence.

The Eastern Region has made significant steps forward in building organisational cultural capacity.

Three tiers of identified opportunities for action

CLICK HERE to view each action and proposed recommendations in the project report and to gain an in-depth understanding into the importance of the need for local, co-located, integrated, Aboriginal community controlled service delivery and the need for sustained and cohesive efforts to both improve and embed cultural competence at organisational and practitioner levels. Since the provision of these recommendations, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community members of the Outer East Melbourne area of Healesville and surrounds have seen further improvements to the access of culturally responsive health services and contribute to better health outcomes. These improvements have specifically resulted from:

  • Strong leadership and advocacy from the HICSA Board and management supported by Inspiro and Yarra Ranges Council to State government
  • A commitment to dadirri and a participatory action research approach
  • Increased recognition of the need to understand and incorporate Indigenous Ways of Knowing Being and Doing.
  • The involvement of Traditional custodians in the early project and subsequent activities
  • Regional leadership and partnering via key networks
  • Increased operational attention to embedding cultural safety in organisations
  • Commitment to, and investment by local and regional organisations into the Integrated Service Delivery Hub project
  • Expansion of services available from HICSA, including outreach services from other providers
  • Increased communication between HICSA, Eastern Health and HICCI
  • Joint planning of specific community events by HICSA and Eastern Health
  • Investment of DHHS and philanthropic funding into HICSA programming
  • The release and circulation of The Urban Indigenous Community report where findings from the Making Better connections report were used to inform the development of a Cultural Evaluation Framework
  • The development of draft standards for use by Aboriginal community organisations to assist their colleagues in improving culturally safe service delivery.

Although the project time period has lapsed, the research, learnings and outcomes are still resulting in positive implications to this day. QIP congratulates Inspiro on the exceptional undertaking of their initiative and look forward to hearing of future updates and are honoured to have been able to contribute in a small way to the implementation of this work.

It is important to note that this project was only made possible with immense team effort and community collaboration. Numerous stakeholders were involved, with special recognition to be given to Barb Dobson, Project Manager and Aboriginal Health Promotion Officer, from Inspiro.

Download the full project report Making Better Connections Urban Aboriginal Health Promotion: Improving referral pathways in the Outer East May 2015, by CLICKING HERE and for further details relating to Inspiro’s Making Better Connections Project, please contact Barb Dobson via email at hello@inspiro.org.au.

About Russell Renhard

Russell Renhard was a pioneer in the development of quality improvement and capacity building approaches within health and community organisations across Australia. Throughout his career Russell dedicated his effort and expertise to addressing social justice, and supporting systems‐based approaches, promoting access to quality services for all. Russell never stopped believing that change was possible and that a more equitable society could be achieved. It was this belief that sustained his efforts and underpinned his vision.

Changing systems and cultures requires people to think and act outside of the status quo. The Russell Renhard Scholarship will support and reward applicants that embody the spirit of the quality improvement pioneers, those who are “passionate, assertive, visionary and persistent”. Activities of those who receive the Scholarship will address issues of social justice and support systems‐based approaches that promote access to quality human services for all. We all make a difference in the world; the choice for each and every one of us is what difference we want to make.

The Russell Renhard Scholarship honours the significant contribution made by Russell to health and social services, accreditation and continuous quality improvement; this Scholarship allows a legacy to be created for celebrating Russell’s life as well as recognising contributions to causes Russell felt so passionately about.

The importance of cyber and data security – discover our ‘Top 4 Tips’

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Cyber threats are feeling closer to home than ever before with more than 150 countries targeted in the largest known virtual software attack in mid-May, impacting and holding ransom to more than 200,000 individual systems.[1] The greatest impact has been seen in the United Kingdom, with the National Health Service forced to cancel hospital operations, deter patients from presenting in E&T and diversion of ambulances from facilities struggling to cope, after computer access to patient files, scans and test results became frozen and inaccessible. Hospitals, general practices and allied health services were forced to shut down when access to patient records were unobtainable and prescription of medicines was near impossible.[2]

In 2012, hackers undertook an attack on Miami Family Medical Centre, located on the Gold Coast, encrypting data and demanding $4,000 in ransom to release all systems. Although back-up disks and practice programs were corrupted, the functioning back-up system which was not connected to the server ensured all data was retrieved with no records stolen.[3]

Following the peak of this global attack, the Australian Federal Government has confirmed three private businesses have been affected, stressing the importance of information security on computer systems and maintenance of antivirus software to protect against likely future attacks.

The attack exploited vulnerability in Microsoft Windows’ infrastructure infiltrating a software bug into those systems which had not been upgraded, after a repair patch was released in March of this year. The major issue highlighted by this occurrence is the limited understanding of IT infrastructure and security requirements by organisational staff.

As health care providers, computer systems play a central role in day-to-day activities within a practice setting and hold a wealth of personal and sensitive information regarding your patient population. With the looming threat of more cyber attacks set to occur in our digital world, this malicious incident indicates that now is the time to review your current computer security systems, backups and processes to ensure your practice is protected from a pending attack.

AGPAL and QIP’s IT team have identified the top 4 tips to start mitigating your risk when it comes to cyber-attacks and computer and data security.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Click on image to enlarge)

For more information regarding your accreditation requirements or the topics outlined in this feature, please contact our QIP team, call 1300 888 329 or email info@qip.com.au.

 

Celebrating World Accreditation Day 2017 with the ISQua Fellowship Internship Programme

Friday 9 June marks World Accreditation Day 2017, a global initiative to raise awareness of the importance of accreditation.

The AGPAL Group of Companies acknowledge that achieving accreditation takes dedication, team work and a commitment to continuous quality improvement.

Organisations that undergo accreditation commit themselves to a comprehensive program which involves their team reviewing the organisation systems and processes, prior to an independent on-site assessment conducted by dedicated surveyors and assessors.

In an effort to set the benchmark for accreditation and healthcare quality on an international scale, the AGPAL Group of Companies is pleased to again be supporting the International Society for Quality in Health Care (ISQua) Fellowship Internship Programme (the Program). The Program offers opportunities designed to stimulate thought and innovation, instil competence and confidence, and encourage best practice around the world.

We will host four interns, two at a time, for two weeks, starting in September 2017, when we will be joined by Dr Shazia Aman, from Pakistan, and Dr Umesh Gupta, from Papua New Guinea. Then in November we will welcome Dr Syed Sajid Ahmed, from Qatar, and Dr Wesam Mansour, from Egypt.

The 2017 Program comes after the success of the inaugural placement of ISQua interns. In 2016 we welcomed two interns, Girish Swaminathan, NSW, and Dr Tamer Farahat, Dubai, who were provided first-hand experience of the processes and systems of Australian healthcare accreditation throughout the duration of their two month stay with the AGPAL Group of Companies.

We look forward to sharing our interns’ experience with you later this year!

 

Read about the 2016 ISQua Fellowship Programme

  • To listen to ISQua’s interview with Girish Swaminathan about his experience as an intern with AGPAL and QIP in 2016, click here.
  • To read about Dr Tamer Farahat’s experience as an intern with AGPAL and QIP in 2016, click here.
  • More information regarding the ISQua Fellowship Internship Programme can be found here.

 

AGPAL and QIP Conference 2018 – the countdown has begun!

The countdown has begun, only one year to go!

SAVE THE DATE for the AGPAL and QIP Conference, taking place in Melbourne from 17 to 19 May 2018.

Join us as we celebrate AGPALs 21st birthday, the release of the RACGP 5th edition Standards, QIC Standards 7th edition, plus much more!

Visit our official 2018 Conference website below to register your interest at www.agpalqipconference.com.au

Consultation on resources to support the NSQHS Standards (second edition)

The Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care (the Commission) is seeking feedback on draft resources to support the National Safety and Quality Health Service (NSQHS) Standards (second edition) via public consultation until mid-to-late May 2017.

The Standards, along with drafted resources to assist with preparing for and implementing systems and processes for assessment against the Standards, are planned to be launched in November 2017 by the Commission. Assessments against the new edition of the Standards will commence in January 2019.

Draft resources and consultation dates

The consultation period closes on 19 May 2017 for the following resources:

NSQHS Standards (second edition) guide for hospitals

NSQHS Standards (second edition) accreditation workbook for hospitals

The consultation process closes on 24 May 2017 for the following resources:

NSQHS Standards (second edition) guide for day procedure services

NSQHS Standards (second edition) guide for multi-purpose services and small rural hospitals

Be sure to review the relevant documentation and provide your feedback to input into the development of the new Standards and associated resources.

For any queries relating to these documents of the review process, contact the NSQHS via:
E: NSQHSStandards@safetyandquality.gov.au

P: 1800 304 056.

This information has been retrieved from:
https://www.safetyandquality.gov.au/our-work/assessment-to-the-nsqhs-standards/national-standards-program-updates-and-consultations/

Adelaide HOW2 Training – Rainbow Tick

Does your organisation have aspirations to increase inclusivity and celebrate diversity?

The HOW2 create lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) inclusive services program provides practical support to enable organisations to work towards these goals.  Four sessions held six weeks apart provides participants with increased knowledge and capacity in:

  1. Auditing your service
  2. Consulting consumers
  3. Educating colleagues
  4. Developing and implementing an action plan
  5. Managing obstacles
  6. Evaluating changes

This program, presented by SHine SA, is based on the Rainbow Tick national standards developed by Gay and Lesbian Health Victoria (GLHV), in conjunction with QIP (Quality, Innovation & Performance).

For more information or to secure your attendance please contact Holley Skene (holley.skene@shinesa.org.au or 08 8300 5325) or visit www.shinesa.org.au/courses/how2/)