Seeking Rural and Urban U.S. Practices to Enroll in ASCO’s Quality Offerings With Grant Funding from Stavros Niarchos Foundation

June 20, 2019
care team members standing in a circle putting their hands together in the middle

ASCO is seeking 10 oncology practices in rural or urban centers in the U.S. that primarily treat underserved populations to participate in its Quality Oncology Practice Initiative (QOPI®) and Quality Training Program (QTP) offerings for a three-year period, with training and funding support provided.

The Stavros Niarchos Foundation has generously provided a grant, resulting from a successful pilot program, “Improving the Quality of Cancer Care in Medically Underserved Communities,” for more than $600,000 to cover the expenses for these practices to receive this training.

First, the practice would begin abstracting chart data in QOPI®, after training sessions on how to do this. QOPI® is ASCO’s quality assessment program that has helped more than 1,000 practices to date conduct self-examination and identify specific areas for quality improvement. Participating practices can report on more than 170 evidence-based quality measures through the easy-to-use collection tool and receive individual performance scores by practice, site, and provider, as well as benchmarked scores aggregated from all participating practices. The data and results then can be used to inform future quality improvement projects and initiatives.

Next, the practice would participate in ASCO’s six-month QTP course, which is comprised of three in-person sessions—which include seminars, case examples, and small-group exercises—combined with on-site work at the practice and virtual meetings with ASCO staff and improvement coaches. The QTP brings cancer care teams together to select, design, and implement a quality improvement project at their practices, and it is aimed at all oncology specialties, as well as diverse practice types and institutional settings. Experienced improvement coaches who are renowned practitioners in oncology and quality improvement are assigned to help guide the teams. More than 100 teams have completed the program to date, and there is a library of past projects from participants who have completed the program.

Finally, each practice will host a QTP one-day workshop at its practice to help incorporate the principals of quality improvement in their respective institutions. These workshops introduce participants to tools and frameworks that are used in quality improvement and teach attendees to effectively lead or participate in improvement activities. The goal is to give oncology providers skills and a sense of empowerment to tackle quality improvement projects that will help reduce clinical variation and improve patient outcomes.

During the last months of the grant period, practices will continue their quality improvement and QOPI® reporting work with coaching from ASCO while they complete independent projects and participate in a learning collaborative.

Practices that participate in the QOPI® and QTP are eligible for various continuing education credits.

The grant will be administered through Conquer Cancer, the ASCO Foundation.

For more information, please contact the QTP team.