October 18th, 2006

This summer, Great River Medical Center submitted an application with the Iowa Quality Center’s 2006 Iowa Recognition for Performance Excellence (IRPE) program. Organizations that receive this recognition are those that have implemented systematic processes and continuous improvements, which are critical for sustained organizational success. Recently, the hospital received word that it will receive a site visit from Iowa Quality Center examiners. The site visit is scheduled Oct. 24 and 25.

The IRPE program is designed to help organizations assess and strengthen performance and capabilities and, in turn, implement an integrated approach to organizational performance excellence that results in:
• Delivery of ever-improving value to customers, contributing to marketplace success
• Improvement of overall organizational effectiveness and capabilities
• Organizational and personal learning

“Receiving a site visit with a first-time application is a tremendous achievement,” said Mark Richardson, Great River Medical Center’s president and CEO. “Many people at the hospital spent a great deal of time this past spring and summer completing our application, and it’s very satisfying to know that their efforts have advanced us this far in the process.”

The IRPE’s evaluation criteria are the same as the Baldrige National Quality Program Criteria for Performance Excellence, which have been used for the past 15 years by thousands of organizations across the country to stay abreast of competition and improve performance. The criteria are divided into seven major categories:
• Business Results
• Customer and Market Focus
• Human Resource Focus
• Leadership
• Measurement, Analysis and Knowledge Management
• Process Management
• Strategic Planning

“Great River Medical Center’s 60-page IRPE application was completed with input from all areas of the hospital, and it was based on criteria that are specific to health care,” said Lynette Collier, executive director of Development at Great River Medical Center. “The criteria are designed to get to the core of how an organization operates today and how it prepares for the future.”

The IRPE program was created through a partnership between the Iowa Quality Center and the Iowa Business Council, and continues through the support and sponsorship of organizations throughout the state. The Iowa Quality Center provides resources for continuous improvement, including an extensive resource library, networking opportunities and training seminars.

“The value of participating in the IRPE program is the opportunity it provides to conduct a self-evaluation and improve systems and processes by identifying strengths and opportunities for improvement,” said Teresa Colgan, vice president of Quality. “And now, with a site visit, we will receive an even greater level feedback and external analysis from a team of trained examiners.”