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St. Elizabeth Medical Center has a long history of pursuing excellence in quality healthcare. With a strong foundation in Total Quality Management (TQM), the Medical Center’s leadership decided in 2002 to begin an innovative initiative that would align the Medical Center’s Quality Management System (QMS) with the requirements of the ISO 9001 Standard. This internationally recognized standard defines the requirements for a patient/ customer focused, process-based, quality management system.
This initiative culminated with the Medical Center being the twelfth hospital in the United States to receive ISO 9001 Certification in September 2005. At that time, there was a movement underway at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to approve a new accreditation program called the National Integrated Accreditation for Healthcare Organizations (NIAHO) which required that, along with compliance with the CMS’s Conditions of Participation, accredited entities be compliant with the ISO 9001 QMS Standard. This presented the Medical Center with the opportunity to improve our quality efforts by changing our accreditation services from the Joint Commission to the new DNV Healthcare’s NIAHO Standard that is more aligned with our ISO based QMS. This was successfully accomplished in September 2008.
The cornerstone of the NIAHO Standard, with its integration with the ISO 9001
Standard, is continual improvement.
Through the application of these standards, along with the collaborative relationship with DNV Healthcare, St. Elizabeth Medical Center is in a strong position to continually improve our processes, healthcare delivery systems and our overall healthcare services.