UP Health System - Portage Named Duke LifePoint Quality Affiliate

May 21, 2019

UP Health System -- Portage today announced that it has been named a Duke LifePoint Quality Affiliate. This designation recognizes hospitals within the LifePoint Health system that have enrolled in the LifePoint National Quality Program and succeeded in transforming their culture of safety and achieving high standards of quality care, performance improvement and patient engagement. 

"Our top priority has been to ensure that our hospital provides patients with the highest quality of care possible," said Randy Neiswonger, chief executive officer of UPHS -- Portage. "I'm so proud of our talented team and their tireless commitment to providing premier healthcare for the Copper Country. I look forward to what we will accomplish in the future as a Duke LifePoint Quality Affiliate, as earning this esteemed designation is our promise to the community that we will keep striving for excellence."

UPHS -- Portage is a 36-bed facility that has served people in the Western Upper Peninsula (UP) for more than 123 years. To achieve Duke LifePoint Quality Affiliate designation, the hospital implemented a number of best practices and launched new initiatives to engage patients and families, enhance patient safety and improve quality care.

For example, the hospital team implemented the "Foundational Five" Safety Behaviors, which include conducting daily briefs, debriefs and huddles; using learning boards; and practicing executive patient safety rounding. Executive patient safety rounding helps ensure that leaders at every level of the organization engage with staff, physicians, patients and families about quality and patient safety. The hospital also implemented bedside shift reporting to help ensure clear communication, reduce the risk of errors and maintain consistency of care during shift changes. Bedside shift reporting is an effective method for transferring information from one provider to another, while also involving patients in discussions about their health, progress and treatment plan. Additionally, the team successfully reduced the number of patient readmissions to the hospital within 30 days of discharge by more than 30 percent and established a Patient and Family Advisory Council to help further improve the patient experience.

"The UPHS -- Portage team has gone above and beyond to meet the requirements of the LifePoint National Quality Program, and we are delighted to officially recognize this facility as a Duke LifePoint Quality Affiliate," said Victor Giovanetti, FACHE, executive vice president, hospital operations for LifePoint Health. "The hospital takes seriously its role in providing quality care close to home for its community, and achieving this designation is one more way it is directly advancing our mission of Making Communities Healthier."

The LifePoint National Quality Program was created through a collaboration between LifePoint Health and Duke University Health System. When LifePoint hospitals enroll in the program, they begin working with Duke and LifePoint quality coaches to evaluate and strengthen their quality programs and processes. Following an initial evaluation, the hospital creates a plan and begins to employ changes that will help it achieve quality improvement benchmarks and establish long-term solutions to sustain its results. 

In addition to evaluating common quality care and patient safety metrics, the LifePoint National Quality Program focuses on foundational elements required to sustain quality care, including committed leadership, systems to ensure continuous performance and process improvement, and a culture dedicated to safety. Duke LifePoint Quality Affiliate designation denotes those hospitals that achieve a broad range of criteria in each of these areas and demonstrate a capacity to continuously measure and improve the work they do. 

About UP Health System -- Portage 

UP Health System -- Portage supports a multi-specialty group of over 40 physicians, over a dozen allied health professionals and has been serving the Western Upper Peninsula of Michigan since 1896. The main campus is a 36-bed hospital, a verified chest pain center through the Society of Cardiovascular Patient Care (SCPC) and possesses the area's only Open Bore MRI. UP Health System -- Portage was home to the first Level III ACS (American College of Surgeons)-verified trauma center and emergency department in the state.

Other services include a dedicated physician for hospital stays, cardiopulmonary, arthroscopic surgery, emergency orthopedics, sports medicine, x-ray & diagnostics, certified sleep disorder center, Express Care walk-in clinic, regional dialysis unit, pharmacy, 64-slice CT scanner, nuclear imaging, digital mammography, radiological and laboratory services, rehab, home care and hospice, and a 60-bed senior living community.