Quality Innovation Networks Share Varied Resources for Nursing Homes on Mostly User-Friendly Websites

Published in: Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, Volume 67, Issue 11, pages 2376–2381 (November 2019). doi: 10.1111/jgs.16201

Posted on RAND.org on February 19, 2020

by Denise D. Quigley, Andrew W. Dick, Patricia Stone

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Background/Objective

Quality innovation networks' (QINs') support of nursing homes (NHs) is a national strategy to systematically improve the quality of care experienced by residents. QINs have been tasked with providing NHs with information, resources, tools, and training to assist in developing best practices and to support quality improvement efforts in infection prevention (including joining the National Healthcare Safety Network [NHSN]), avoid unnecessary hospitalizations, and increase use of hospice and palliative care. Our objective was to examine QIN online resources provided to NHs to support best practices and improvement efforts.

Design

An environmental scan was conducted.

Setting/Measurement

Each QIN website was evaluated on (1) usability, (2) accessibility and prominence, (3) website design, (4) availability of training materials, (5) recency of update, (6) identification of key personnel, and (8) quality focus areas (ie, infection prevention, NHSN, antibiotic stewardship, reducing unnecessary or avoidable hospitalizations, and palliative and hospice care).

Results

QIN websites varied dramatically in design and resources offered to NHs as well as in the content and ease of finding information. Antibiotic stewardship and NHSN resources were widely available. Information (ie, fact sheets) on reducing avoidable hospitalizations was commonly available, while resources, such as tool kits, webinars, training, and contact information for personnel on reducing avoidable hospitalizations, were available to 23 states. Infection prevention resources were varied and limited to 34 states. Both palliative care and hospice resources were available through only a few QINs (13 states and 20 states, respectively).

Conclusions

Given that much of the information, tool kits, and resources are standardized and in the public domain, centralized resources with tailored or specialized links to unique local resources, like in-person trainings and state-specific contact information, could be more beneficial for NHs.

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