(RHINELANDER, Wis.) – Ministry Saint Mary’s Hospital has earned Quality Respiratory Care Recognition (QRCR) under a national program aimed at helping patients and families make informed decisions about the quality of the respiratory care services available in hospitals.
About 700 hospitals or approximately 15% of hospitals in the United States have applied for and received this award.
The QRCR program was started by the American Association for Respiratory Care (AARC) in 2003 to help consumers identify those facilities using qualified respiratory therapists to provide respiratory care. Hospitals earning the QRCR designation ensure patient safety by agreeing to adhere to a strict set of criteria governing their respiratory care services.
“The Ministry Saint Mary’s Hospital respiratory therapy team is devoted to providing exceptional quality care and this achievement is a direct result of keeping patients first in everything we do,” said Chris Krebs, Ministry Saint Mary’s director of patient care services. “We’re honored to have earned Quality Respiratory Care Recognition.”
To qualify for the recognition, Ministry Saint Mary’s provided documentation showing it meets the following conditions:
• All respiratory therapists employed by the hospital to deliver bedside respiratory care services are either legally recognized by the state as competent to provide respiratory care services or hold the CRT or RRT credential.
• Respiratory therapists are available 24 hours.
• Other personnel qualified to perform specific respiratory procedures and the amount of supervision required for personnel to carry out specific procedures must be designated in writing.
• A doctor of medicine or osteopathy is designated as medical director of respiratory care services.
• Hospital policy prohibits the routine delivery of medicated aerosol treatments utilizing small volume nebulizers, metered dose inhalers, or intermittent positive pressure treatments to multiple patients simultaneously. Circumstances under which this practice is permitted is defined by policy.
• Use a process that periodically compares performance of your respiratory department on efficiency and quality metrics with similar departments for the purpose of identifying an achieving best practice.
The AARC’s QRCR program grew out of growing concerns among healthcare leaders and the general public regarding the safety and quality of healthcare services provided to patients. Hospitals that meet the QRCR requirements provide a level of respiratory care consistent with national standards and guidelines, and should be commended for their commitment to quality care. A list of QRCR hospitals is maintained at the association’s website for consumers, www.YourLungHealth.org.
Respiratory therapists are specially trained healthcare professionals who work under physician’s orders to provide a wide range of breathing treatments and other services to people with asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cystic fibrosis, lung cancer, AIDS, and other lung or lung-related conditions. They also care for premature infants and are key members of lifesaving response teams charged with handling medical emergencies.
The AARC is a membership organization representing more than 50,000 health professionals involved in respiratory care nationwide.