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UAB Medicine Earns Highest Rating In Vascular Quality Awards

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The UAB Medicine Division of Vascular Surgery & Endovascular Therapy received the highest possible rating in the Vascular Quality Initiative® (VQI) awards program. The rating is reserved for medical centers that successfully participate in the VQI, which is a nationwide effort to improve cardiovascular care.

The VQI works to improve the quality, safety, effectiveness, and cost of vascular health care by analyzing and sharing data on pre-operative risk factors, intra-procedural variables, post-procedural outcomes, and one-year follow-up data.

The VQI has 4,000 participating physicians across the specialties of vascular surgery, cardiothoracic surgery, neurosurgery, radiology, general surgery, neurology, and cardiology, and they represent 800 participating hospitals, outpatient centers, vein clinics, and physician practices. The data provide a tremendous quality assessment resource, capturing reports on 800,000 procedures from VQI participants. Providers can compare their performance to regional and national benchmarks. Each VQI member receives biannual dashboards and regular performance reports that may be used to support quality improvement initiatives.

As a participating center, UAB Medicine was rated on actions in four domains that promise to lead to improvements in cardiovascular patient care. Those domains are:

  • The completeness of long-term follow-up reporting, based on the percentage of patients for whom at least nine months of follow-up data are collected
  • Physician attendance at semi-annual meetings of a regional quality group
  • Initiation of quality improvement activities based on VQI data
  • The number of vascular registries in which the center participates

UAB Vascular Surgery & Endovascular Therapy – part of the UAB Cardiovascular Institute – reached all of these participation goals to earn three stars, the highest possible rating. Division Director Adam Beck, MD, says the rating reflects successful collaboration toward quality improvement efforts.

“It’s satisfying to earn this participation award as confirmation of quality efforts UAB Medicine has initiated,” Dr. Beck says. “This corresponds to our larger efforts and excellent collaboration in programs across the cardiovascular service line. This award highlights all of those efforts.”