State Nursing Home Quality Improvement Programs: Site Visit and Synthesis Report. Iowa

05/15/2003

Principles of Best Practices1

STRATEGY

A best practices strategy should be developed, articulated, and incorporated into many of the services managed by organizations. Opportunities for collaboration should be used to help establish such program-level strategies.

IDENTIFYING PRACTICES

Focus on proven sources of best practices. Promote "leading edge" practices. Residents and their families are excellent resources. Also, use innovative methods to help identify new and emerging practices.

SOURCES

Examine practices in programs that have a reputation of excellence, especially those where resources have not been plentiful. Also, focus on Administrators or DONs recognized for special expertise to help identify best practices.

METHODS

Other suggestions for soliciting and identifying practices include having a competition among service functions, information exchange forums, mentors, speakers, soliciting electronic submissions, and old-fashioned bulletin boards.

EVALUATING PRACTICES

The concept is to establish criteria, up front, to benchmark and determine which practices are effective, or best, and have the greatest usefulness for residents and families.

CRITERIA

Use residents and families to help identify pertinent and consistent criteria, up front. Use criteria such as cost effectiveness, time savings, proven performance, satisfactions surveys and ease of implementation.

Please send all Best Practices questions/comments to Best.Practices@dia.state.ia.us

Best Practices Program Disclaimer

Participation in the Best Practices Program is strictly voluntary on the part of Iowa long-term care facilities. The identification of a best practice at an Iowa long-term care facility is not an endorsement or recommendation of the practice by the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals or the Health Facilities Division. Nor does the identification of a best practice create a new standard used during the survey process. The identification of a best practice is solely designed to make available to other long-term care facilities in Iowa information about new or innovative methods positively impacting resident care and quality of life.

Procedures of Best Practices2

  • Participation in Best Practices is voluntary.

  • The Best Practice designation is neither an endorsement nor the establishment of a standard.

  • The identification of a Best Practice does not preclude other deficiencies.

  • Participation in Best Practices does not alter the survey or complaint investigation process.

  • The Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals (DIA) reserves the right to remove a facility from Best Practices list for reasons dealing with the quality of services for residents.

  • DIA will acknowledge in writing when a surveyor confirms a Best Practice.

  • The DIA Administrator and Bureau Chiefs will assess Best Practices for inclusion on the agency's web page.

  • Best Practices on the DIA web page will be changed or updated once every six months.

Please send all Best Practices questions/comments to Best.Practices@dia.state.ia.us

Best Practices Program Disclaimer

Participation in the Best Practices Program is strictly voluntary on the part of Iowa long-term care facilities. The identification of a best practice at an Iowa long-term care facility is not an endorsement or recommendation of the practice by the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals or the Health Facilities Division. Nor does the identification of a best practice create a new standard used during the survey process. The identification of a best practice is solely designed to make available to other long-term care facilities in Iowa information about new or innovative methods positively impacting resident care and quality of life.


  1. Source: http://www.dia-hfd.state.ia.us/bestpractices/Principles.asp, 4/1/2003.

  2. Source: http://www.dia-hfd.state.ia.us/bestpractices/procedures.asp, 4/1/2003.

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