The CF Center of WNY (formerly Women & Children’s Hospital of Buffalo) is no stranger to QI efforts. Team members in Buffalo, under the leadership of Drucy Borowitz, MD (current VP of Community Partnerships at the CF Foundation (CFF)), were part of the CF Foundation’s 1st Learning and Leadership Collaborative, and received a CFF Quality Care Award in 2007-2008 and again in year 2013. In 2013 the Buffalo center received a CFF Quality Improvement in CF Care award for annual depression screening in our clinic with stepped care interventions based on depression severity. We have disseminated this work in the Supplement to the Mental Health Guidelines and the Mental Health in CF Dropbox, and our protocol has been widely adopted by CF Centers. It has been amazing to be at the forefront of this effort, and to see Mental Health Screening become standard procedure over the last 4 years.
When I joined in Buffalo and then became CF Center Director in 2014, we added Infection Control as one of our QI efforts in addition to Mental Health Screening. Through the use of QI techniques with patient and staff input we made the guidelines a part of our regular practice. In addition, as a CF team we worked on a QI project over the last 4 years that has continually improved our weight for length in children under 24 months from the lower quartile steadily up to number 9 in the country in 2016.
Seeing all of these projects come to fruition has shown me the power of QI efforts in affecting positive change in our Center and through other CF Centers across the country. As part of the Pilot Learning Network, I hope to lead our Pediatric and Adult Teams to continued and expanded successes in addressing our goals of helping people with CF live their dreams, improving health and quality of life. Partnering with patients and parents will be a huge focus of our efforts. I am so excited about working with our team and our Parent Partner to make our CF Center the best it can be, while sharing our challenges and triumphs with all those in the Network and hopefully the world. I believe Helen Keller said it best: “Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.”