Clinical Surveillance Resources

When it comes to resident care, your role is to see the bigger picture and to put systems in place that not only protect your residents but also promote their best possible function. Preventing and identifying medical errors and adverse events is imperative for facility leaders. Using the latest technologies to synthesize resident care outcome data -- in complement with implementing proper bedside and clinical decision-making protocols -- are part of a strong clinical surveillance system that bolsters quality assurance. Find out what you need to know and how your facility can take evidence-based steps to improve care. 

  • March 3 CMS Quarterly Dementia Care Call to Target Infection Prevention, Staffing, Restful Environment: Register Now

    By CMS - January 05, 2020
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  • Q&A: Is there a regulation on how early we can begin getting people up for the day?

    By Cheryl Johnson, MSN, RN, Director of Healthcare Services, Buckner Retirement Services, Inc. - December 04, 2019
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  • Nursing Home Infection Control Self-Assesssment Worksheet From CMS and CDC (12/19)

    By CMS - December 02, 2019

    This 2019 Nursing Home Infection Control Worksheet (ICWS) is a collaborative effort by CMS and CDC and meant to be used by facilities as a self-assessment tool. It comprises both regulatory requirements and best practices in infection prevention and control. A facility that uses this ICWS will identify gaps in practice and have a “roadmap” that can lead to an improved infection prevention and control program. The assessment reviews the following domains:

    • Infection Control program infrastructure and Infection Preventionist
    • Infection Preventionist relationship to Quality Assurance Committee
    • Infection surveillance and outbreak response.
    • Influenza and pneumococcal Immunization
    • Linen management
    • Infection prevention during transitions of care
    • Water Management Program
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  • CMS Online Training: How to Develop an Antibiotic Stewardship Program (11/19)

    By CMS - November 27, 2019
    Class Description: To provide technical assistance to nursing home providers on the implementation of an Antibiotic Stewardship Program. Training goals include to support compliance with the requirements for an antibiotic stewardship program (ASP) and to improve appropriate antibiotic usage. Completion of the training does not automatically deem a provider compliant. This training supports compliance, but providers must still meet all components of the antibiotic stewardship requirements.
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  • Advance Care Planning: Two Recent Studies (11/19)

    By AHRQ - November 12, 2019

    Advance Care Planning: An Exploration of the Beliefs, Self-Efficacy, Education, and Practices of RNs and LPNs.

    Objective: This study compared the advance care planning (ACP)-related beliefs, sense of self-efficacy, education, and practices of RNs and LPNs.



    Advance Care Planning in Skilled Nursing Facilities: A Multisite Examination of Professional Judgments.

    BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Lack of advance care planning (ACP) may increase hospitalizations and impact the quality of life for skilled nursing facility (SNF) residents, especially African American residents who may be less likely to receive ACP discussions. We examined the professional judgments of SNF providers to see if race of SNF residents and providers, and risk for hospitalization for residents influenced professional judgments as to when ACP was needed and feelings of responsibility for ensuring ACP discussions.

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  • AHRQ 2019 Chartbook on Patient Safety (10/19)

    By AHRQ - October 28, 2019

    This Chartbook on Patient Safety includes a section with results from the National Nursing Home Survey on Patient Safety:

    National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Report

    This Patient Safety chartbook is part of a family of documents and tools that support the National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Report (QDR). The QDR includes annual reports to Congress mandated in the Healthcare Research and Quality Act of 1999 (P.L. 106-129). This chartbook includes a summary of trends across measures of patient safety from the QDR and figures illustrating select measures of patient safety. A PowerPoint version is also available that users can download for presentations.

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  • CMS Dementia Care Resources Webpage (10/19)

    By CMS - October 25, 2019

    CMS has established a Dementia Care Resources page to provide information that was previously housed at the National Nursing Home Quality Improvement Campaign. Additional resources are available through the QIO program.

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  • Infection Control in Healthcare Personnel Guidelines (Part I) - Updated (10/19)

    By CDC - October 23, 2019
    Preventing the transmission of infectious diseases among healthcare personnel (HCP) and patients is a critical component of safe healthcare delivery in all healthcare settings. Today, CDC published Infection Control in Healthcare Personnel: Infrastructure and Routine Practices for Occupational Infection Prevention and Control Services, an update of four sections of Part I of the Guideline for infection control in health care personnel, 1998 (“1998 Guideline“) and their corresponding recommendations in Part II:

    ·  C. Infection Control Objectives for a Personnel Health Service

    ·  D. Elements of a Personnel Health Service for Infection Control

    ·  H. Emergency-Response Personnel

    ·  J. The Americans With Disabilities Act

    The updated recommendations are aimed at the leaders and staff of Occupational Health Services (OHS) and the administrators and leaders of healthcare organizations (HCO) and are intended to facilitate the provision of occupational infection prevention and control (IPC) services to HCP and prevent the spread of infections between HCP and others. Additional updates to the 1998 Guideline are underway and will be published in the future. Updates in Part I include: 

    ·  a broader range of elements necessary for providing occupational IPC services to HCP;

    ·  applicability to the wider range of healthcare settings where patient care is now delivered, including hospital-based, long-term care, and outpatient settings such as ambulatory and home healthcare; and

    ·  expanded guidance on policies and procedures for occupational IPC services and strategies for delivering occupational IPC services to HCP.

    New topics include:

    ·  administrative support and resource allocation for OHS by senior leaders and management,

    ·  service oversight by OHS leadership, and

    ·  use of performance measures to track occupational IPC services and guide quality improvement initiatives.  

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  • Oct. 24 CDC Call With Free CE: Preventing the Spread of Novel or Targeted Multidrug-resistant Organisms (MDROs) in Nursing Homes through Enhanced Barrier Precautions

    By CDC - October 23, 2019

    At the conclusion of the session, the participant will be able to accomplish the following:

    • Describe the burden of multidrug-resistant organisms (MDROs).
    • Describe challenges to preventing MDRO transmission in nursing homes.
    • Define Standard Precautions, Enhanced Barrier Precautions, and Contact Precautions.
    • Identify which residents and activities meet criteria for Enhanced Barrier Precautions.
    • Discuss best practices for implementing Enhanced Barrier Precautions.
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  • Infection Prevention and Control: CDC Prevention Epicenters Program Innovation and Best Practices for PPE Use (10/19)

    By CDC - October 23, 2019

    Unrecognized spread of germs from healthcare personnel (HCP) contamination occurs every day in healthcare settings, posing a risk to patients and HCP alike. Recent Ebola virus outbreaks demonstrated that the potential for transmission of any pathogen in healthcare settings poses an immediate and serious threat. 

     Preventing the spread of germs in healthcare is essential to protecting the health of patients and HCP. This International Infection Prevention Week, the CDC Prevention Epicenters Program is pleased to announce a groundbreaking new journal supplement, “Personal Protective Equipment for Preventing Contact Transmission of Pathogens: Innovations from CDC’s Prevention Epicenters Program,” composed of 14 in-depth studies, published in this month’s Clinical Infectious Diseases. This research provides insights from recent personal protective equipment (PPE) work in U.S. healthcare settings. It provides evidence to improve routine use of PPE, and to prevent contact transmission of Ebola and other infectious diseases in healthcare settings.

    All healthcare settings can benefit from improvements in PPE use and design. PPE plays an important role in preventing the spread of infectious diseases in healthcare settings, but its optimal design and use need to be informed by dedicated research to achieve the reliability and effectiveness needed to protect patients and HCP. 

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  • AHRQ Team Develops Definition of 'Omissions of Care' for LTC (10/19)

    By AHRQ - October 18, 2019

    Adverse events and poor health outcomes are continuing challenges for nursing home residents and staff. Research has shown that many resident harms are avoidable and may be caused by situations in which residents do not receive needed care, often called omissions of care. Omissions of care research in nursing home settings is limited and definitions of omissions of care vary. Therefore, AHRQ has developed a definition of omissions of care for nursing homes intended to be meaningful to stakeholders, including residents and caregivers, and actionable for research or improving quality of care. 

    The new definition, intended as a meaningful and actionable reference for researchers, nursing home residents and caregivers, states: 

    “Omissions of care in nursing homes encompass situations when care—either clinical or nonclinical—is not provided for a resident and results in additional monitoring or intervention or increases the risk of an undesirable or adverse physical, emotional, or psychosocial outcome for the resident.”
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  • Updated Infection Control in Healthcare Personnel Guidelines (Part I) (10/19)

    By CDC - October 18, 2019

    Preventing the transmission of infectious diseases among healthcare personnel (HCP) and patients is a critical component of safe healthcare delivery in all healthcare settings. Today, CDC published Infection Control in Healthcare Personnel: Infrastructure and Routine Practices for Occupational Infection Prevention and Control Services, an update of four sections of Part I of the Guideline for infection control in health care personnel, 1998 (“1998 Guideline“) and their corresponding recommendations in Part II:

    ·  C. Infection Control Objectives for a Personnel Health Service

    ·  D. Elements of a Personnel Health Service for Infection Control

    ·  H. Emergency-Response Personnel

    ·  J. The Americans With Disabilities Act

    Read more
  • HHS Guide for Appropriate Tapering or Discontinuation of Long-Term Opioid Use (10/19)

    By US Department of Health and Human Services - October 15, 2019

    The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services published a new Guide for Clinicians on the Appropriate Dosage Reduction or Discontinuation of Long-Term Opioid Analgesics - PDF. Individual patients, as well as the health of the public, benefit when opioids are prescribed only when the benefit of using opioids outweighs the risks.  But once a patient is on opioids for a prolonged duration, any abrupt change in the patient’s regimen may put the patient at risk of harm and should include a thorough, deliberative case review and discussion with the patient. The HHS Guide provides advice to clinicians who are contemplating or initiating a change in opioid dosage.

    “Care must be a patient-centered experience. We need to treat people with compassion, and emphasize personalized care tailored to the specific circumstances and unique needs of each patient,” said Adm. Brett P. Giroir, M.D., assistant secretary for health. “This Guide provides more resources for clinicians to best help patients achieve the dual goals of effective pain management and reduction in the risk for addiction.”

    Clinicians have a responsibility to coordinate patients’ pain treatment and opioid-related problems. In certain situations, a reduced opioid dosage may be indicated, in joint consultation with the care team and the patient. HHS does not recommend opioids be tapered rapidly or discontinued suddenly due to the significant risks of opioid withdrawal, unless there is a life-threatening issue confronting the individual patient.

    Compiled from published guidelines and practices endorsed in the peer-reviewed literature, the Guide covers important issues to consider when changing a patient’s chronic pain therapy. It lists issues to consider prior to making a change, which include shared decision-making with the patient; issues to consider when initiating the change; and issues to consider as a patient’s dosage is being tapered, including the need to treat symptoms of opioid withdrawal and provide behavioral health support. 

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  • Consensus Recommendations to Prevent Secondary Fractures in Adults 65+ with Osteoporosis (10/19)

    By Hinda and Arthur Marcus Institute for Aging Research - October 14, 2019

    Coalition Reaches Consensus on Recommendations to Prevent Secondary Fractures in Adults 65+ with Osteoporosis

    Recommendations target all health care professionals who participate in the care of older adults at risk for osteoporotic fractures

    BOSTON (October 2, 2019) - A multistakeholder coalition assembled by the American Society for Bone and Mineral Research (ASBMR) has issued clinical recommendations for the optimal prevention of secondary fracture among people aged 65 years and older with a hip or vertebral fracture - the most serious complication associated with osteoporosis. Douglas P. Kiel, M.D., M.P.H., Director of the Musculoskeletal Research Center in the Hinda and Arthur Marcus Institute for Aging Research at Hebrew SeniorLife and Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, is senior author on the report and served as co-leader of the project. The recommendations were published last month in the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research to coincide with the annual meeting of the ASBMR where Dr. Kiel was honored with the 2019 Esteemed Frederic C. Bartter Award. This prestigious award is bestowed upon an ASBMR member in recognition of outstanding clinical investigation in disorders of bone and mineral metabolism. 

    The coalition developed 13 recommendations strongly supported by the empirical literature and recommends increased communication with patients regarding fracture risk, mortality and morbidity outcomes, and fracture risk reduction.
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  • 10 Keys to Operationalizing Trauma-Informed Care

    By Caralyn Davis, Staff Writer - October 08, 2019

    Once providers conceptually understand trauma-informed care, they often get stuck navigating what to do next. Steps that can help directors of nursing services (DNSs) and other members of the management team begin to operationalize trauma-informed care include the following:


    Avoid a checklist mentality

    “It sounds cliché, but trauma-informed care is a process, not a destination,” says Kathleen Weissberg, OTD, OTR/L, CMDCP, education director at Select Rehabilitation in Glenview, IL. “Every time I teach, I’m asked, ‘Where is my checklist? How can I make sure we are doing everything that we are supposed to do?’”

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