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New Jersey Health System Successfully Prepares for Triennial Survey

Cooper University Health Care, based in Camden, New Jersey, is southern New Jersey's leading provider of health services as the clinical campus of Cooper Medical School of Rowan University. A vital Camden institution for more than 125 years, the Cooper network serves more than 500,000 patients a year.

The Challenge

After taking over responsibility for regulatory and accreditation in a corporate reorganization, Adrienne L. Elberfeld, senior vice president of quality and operations excellence, quickly realized she needed “an outside set of eyes” to evaluate Cooper’s readiness for a Joint Commission survey. The system was anticipating a visit by surveyors within the next six months, however the individual responsible for supervising the process had vacated their position.

The Solution

Elberfeld considered three options but chose Premier’s accreditation readiness consulting services because of Coopers ongoing trusted relationship with Premier®.

Cooper invited the Premier accreditation readiness team to conduct a mock survey about three months prior to the anticipated surveyor visit.

“We were surprised by the number of issues Premier found and realized we had vulnerabilities, which we needed to address,” Elberfeld said.

To help get the organization focused and prepared for the surveyors’ visit, Premier’s team was invited to continue its work on campus nearly every Monday for the next three months working with departments and staff.

“The Premier Team members were fully engaged the entire time they were on-site,” said Elberfeld. “Their knowledge and experience was invaluable to our success.”

The Results

The survey went well, with surveyors only finding 10 condition of participation issues, two of which were at the condition level. At the end of the follow-up visit about three weeks later, all issues were resolved.

Elberfeld and her team were so pleased with the experience of working with Premier’s readiness team that Cooper joined the Premier Accreditation Readiness Network- a network of more than 30 hospitals continuously supporting each other with accreditation survey readiness.

The network also affords its members the opportunity to “get to know” the Joint Commission survey team leader before the triennial survey through a calendar year introductory conference that targets survey changes and new areas of focus.

“We chose Premier because we have worked so closely with them over the years. The Premier readiness team exceeded our expectations and prepared us for a very successful survey. The mock survey was especially helpful. The team reported out just like the Joint Commission does. It was great.”

–Adrienne L. Elberfeld, Senior Vice President, Quality and Operations Excellence, Cooper University Health Care, Camden, N.J Cooper University Health Care, Camden, N.J.

Premier Is Here to Help

Regulatory compliance is a fact of life for providers, and it places constant pressure on limited personnel and resources.

For more information on Premier’s accreditation readiness consulting services, please contact: QualitySolutions@PremierInc.com.

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