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3rd Annual Conference in May

I’m thrilled to be serving again as the program chair for the 3rd annual AHAP conference. We’re making great progress now in developing the curriculum for the conference, which will take place May 14-15, 2009, at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas. We’re building off all the great feedback from the 2nd annual conference and we will be offering more networking opportunities, interactive sessions, and “real life” information you can use as soon as you get back to your hospitals.

For those who may not know me, I’m Program Manager for Accreditation and Clinical Compliance at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago. I’ve been involved in healthcare administration and quality for over 20 years, and I’ve been involved with AHAP since HCPro established it more than two years ago. My involvement in this association has provided me with networking opportunities within a community of highly motivated and knowledgeable professionals, and it has become an important avenue to validate the work that we are all doing to drive quality within our organizations through the accreditation process.

I wanted to update you on some of the topics we’ll be covering at the conference. The 2009 conference will include sessions on recent changes to the National Patient Safety Goals, The Joint Commission’s Leadership standards, tracers, critical test results, and more. And we’ve already confirmed a speaker from DNV Healthcare, Inc., the first new organization to receive deeming authority for hospitals in more than 30 years.

I invite you to email me ( or contract Brian Driscoll, AHAP’s director, at if you have any questions about the AHAP conference, or if you have any suggestions how we can make it better.

I hope to see you all in Las Vegas!

PS: I hope you all saw Brian’s email inviting you to participate in the 2nd annual AHAP Salary Survey. Brian tells me we have almost 100 responses already. Also, stay tuned for the next working group call, which will focus on critical test results and feature AHAP advisor Gayla Jackson.

In case you missed it…

Here’s a great presentation on the top 10 most frequently scored standards from this year’s AHAP conference, which took place May 8-9 at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas. We understand there was some confusion regarding the location of this breakout session, entitled “Staying ahead of the top 10 most frequently scored standards.” If you didn’t attend this year’s conference, or if you missed this session, click here to download a PDF of the conference workbook and click here to listen to an MP3 of the presentation. The presenter, Kurt Patton, MS, is a senior consultant for The Greeley Company, a division of HCPro, Inc. in Marblehead, MA, president of Patton Healthcare Consulting, LLC, in Glendale, AZ, and former executive director of accreditation services at The Joint Commission (formerly JCAHO).

In the coming weeks, we will continue posting more presentations from this year’s conference. Of the following, which interests you most?

Critical test results?

Keeping up with the IM standards?


Restraint and seclusion?

Suicide risk assessment?

Post a comment to the blog and let us know. Your feedback will determine the next presentation we provide. And, remember, it’s not too early to sign up for next year’s conference! Click here for more information.

AHAP Conference, Day 2

Hello again from Las Vegas!

I wanted to send you an update from Day Two of the AHAP conference. Members got a chance to learn about a few different topics–restraint and seclusion, the top 10 most frequently cited Joint Commission standards, and the 2009 updates to The Joint Commission’s Leadership standards.

During the restraint and seclusion session, Lisa Eddy, RN, CPHQ, senior consultant for The Greeley Company, discussed some of the changes to CMS’ requirements, as well as the differences between what The Joint Commission and CMS require.

Kurt Patton, MS, prinicpal of Patton Consulting, discussed the 10 most frequently scored Joint Commission standards. The top three of these include MM.2.20 (medication storage), NPSG # 2C (critical tests and values), and NPSG # 2B (unapproved abbreviations). MM.2.20 is so highly cited because of its 15 EPs, with the largest problem being the storage of medicatons.

Lisa Eddy spoke during another session on the updates to The Joint Commission’s Leadership standards for 2009. Some of the updates include new language as far as conflict management, leadership relationships, and leaders’ responsibilities in creating a culture of safety.

Lastly, attendees participated in roundtable sessions in which they got the chance to network with their peers on many topics, including critical test results, medication reconciliation, unannounced surveys, National Patient Safety Goals and suicide risk assessment. Attendees discussed their own barriers and successes in these areas and others.

Greetings from the desert!

The 2nd Annual AHAP Conference kicked off this morning at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas with a keynote presentation by Ian Morrison, Ph.D, author, consultant, and futurist on the state of healthcare. AHAP attendees then broke off into a general session on medication reconciliation, presented by Molly McDaniel, PharmD. This year’s conference is off to a great start with almost 100 more accreditation professionals in attendance than last year.

During a standing-room-only presentation by Jean S. Clark, RHIA, CSHA, on struggles facing hospitals dealing with IM standards, she discussed shortening lists for “critical” tests results and values, as “even The Joint Commission recommends you have a short list.” Critical test results and values topped the list of 2007’s top compliance issues with an HIM focus.

During a session updating the status of MS.1.20, Kurt Patton, MS, president of Patton Healthcare Consulting, LLC, recommended keeping your eyes open next week for possible updates on MS.1.20-the Joint Commission’s task force met last week, which could indicate new information in the next week.

Other topics covered today included:

Suicide risk assessment

Critical test results

Rapid response systems and anticoagulant therapy

Joint Commission ongoing professional practice evaluation

Check back tomorrow for more updates from AHAP!

Look Thursday and Friday for live coverage from the conference

The second annual AHAP conference will take place this Thursday and Friday at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas.

Over 150 of your peers have already signed up! But if you are unable to attend this year, you don’t have to completely miss out. Watch our new AHAP Blog this week for reports from the conference. In the coming months, we will also be posting podcasts from the conference, as well as additional interviews, presentations, and tools.

Sessions at this year’s conference include:

  • Medication reconciliation
  • Suicide risk assessment
  • Critical test results
  • IM standards
  • 2009 MS.1.20 changes
  • 2009 Leadership standard changes
  • Restraint and seclusion
  • Quality and The Joint Commission and more…I look forward to seeing many of you this week!