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Physician quality officer: a new model for engaging physicians in quality improvement
Meyers Primary Care Institute Publications and Presentations
  • Kathleen E. Walsh, University of Massachusetts Medical School
  • Walter H. Ettinger, University of Massachusetts Medical School
  • Robert A. Klugman, University of Massachusetts Medical Scholl
UMMS Affiliation
Department of Pediatrics; Meyers Primary Care Institute; Department of Medicine
Publication Date
Document Type
Academic Medical Centers; Humans; Inservice Training; *Physicians; Quality Assurance, Health Care; Safety Management

The slow progress in health care quality improvement and patient safety in America can be attributed, in part, to the challenge of physician engagement. As multidisciplinary patient-centered care becomes the standard, it is essential to integrate physicians into this process. To this end, the UMass Memorial Medical Center redesigned its Physician Quality Officer (PQO) program in 2007. The PQOs of the UMass Memorial Medical Center, who are all practicing clinicians, are fully compensated for their time and effort, trained in safety science, and teamed with other members of the department of quality and patient safety. Over the first year of the new program, the PQOs have successfully led major hospital initiatives in areas such as surgical care improvement, critical values reporting, and medication reconciliation. In this article, the authors describe the challenges and insights in the development and implementation of this new program.

DOI of Published Version
Am J Med Qual. 2009 Jul-Aug;24(4):295-301. Epub 2009 Jun 1. Link to article on publisher's site
Related Resources
Link to Article in PubMed
PubMed ID
Citation Information
Kathleen E. Walsh, Walter H. Ettinger and Robert A. Klugman. "Physician quality officer: a new model for engaging physicians in quality improvement" Vol. 24 Iss. 4 (2009) ISSN: 1062-8606 (Linking)
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