As the integration of Cleveland Clinic Indian River Hospital (CCIRH) continues, two major areas of focus include quality and safety. In a medical setting, these go hand in hand. Dr. David Peter, MD, MBA, FACEP, joined Cleveland Clinic Indian River Hospital as Chief Medical Of cer and was previously involved with Akron General’s integration with Cleveland Clinic. Dr. Peter believes CCIRH has a strong team in place to reach these quality and safety goals. “I felt this was a great opportunity to use experience through another integration process,” he said, “and I’m thrilled to be part of the team.”

Cleveland Clinic designates all of its employees as “caregivers” because they believe each employee has a hand in patient care on some level. Creating a family-like culture, setting expectations, and providing tools and resources needed to achieve quality and safety goals is how Cleveland Clinic provides world-class care and puts patients first.

Cleveland Clinic Indian River Hospital is working on improving overall outcomes and patient experience. Partnering with Cleveland Clinic and sharing best practices will help CCIRH reach goals across the enterprise. Improving outcomes requires a team effort and collaboration between physicians, nursing, administration and all of our caregivers. “Transparency and communication are vital to building a safety culture,” explains Dr. Peter, “sharing lessons learned and improving reporting for safety events.”

The hospital is already seeing positive changes through the tiered-huddle system. Tiered huddles are brief, 15 minute conversations that provide safe environments to share challenges in the moment and identify solutions. They start with the care teams and escalate to executive leadership. Caregivers throughout all tier levels resolve issues, often within the same day. Tiered huddles support CCIRH’s care pillars: caring for patients, caregivers, organization and the community.

With an increase in safety comes improved quality. “We’re establishing common standards, expectations and language around safety and the patient experience,” according to Dr. Peter. “We’ve begun the integration processes, and we’re in continuous contact with Cleveland Clinic Florida in Weston with their quality and safety department. We have lots of support on this journey.”

The expectation is that patients will see an outstanding team delivering high quality care. “Things that occur out of sight should seem natural,” Dr. Peter stated. For example, CCIRH emphasizes hand hygiene and patients should expect caregivers to sanitize

or wash their hands every time they walk in and out of a room. In addition, reducing hospital acquired infections and eliminating serious safety events round out some of the top hospital-wide goals.

Dr. Peter emphasizes the “main goals of CCIRH are to deliver world-class care to patients… this means delivering the right care, in the right place, at the right time, to the right patient, every time. It also means creating the high quality care and experience patients and families will value.”



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