ASCO Quality Improvement Programs Helped Improve the Delivery of Cancer Care in Medically Underserved Communities, New Article Reports

October 14, 2021

Oncology practices that participated in a quality improvement project that included ASCO’s Quality Oncology Practice Initiative (QOPI®) and ASCO Quality Training Program (QTP) were able to make improvements in the care provided to underserved populations in their communities, according to a new article published in the Quality of Management in Health Care journal. The program was supported by a grant to Conquer Cancer®, the ASCO Foundation from the Stavros Niarchos Foundation.

The 2016 grant, provided funding for four oncology practices to participate in ASCO quality improvement activities for two and a half years. Activities included participation in ASCO’s six-month QTP course, training and participation in QOPI®, learning collaboratives, and independent quality improvement projects.

The article notes that the practices identified several overall benefits of program participation, including the creation and strengthening of a culture of quality improvement, a greater understanding of why team skills are needed, and the ability to communicate needed changes, and to articulate why improvements are better for both patients and staff.

The authors stated, “We believe that we have accomplished our goals, which included (1) teaching the skills needed to improve care, (2) providing the participants with opportunities to demonstrate these skills, learn how to continue learning, and show that improvements with vulnerable populations are achievable, and (3) providing opportunities for those practices to remain involved in the program by coaching and supporting them in publishing/presenting their accomplishments.”

In 2020, the Stavros Niarchos Foundation granted additional funding to enable nine oncology practices to participate in the ASCO quality improvement activities. This ongoing project is part of ASCO’s commitment to ensuring that every patient has access to the highest-quality, equitable cancer care. ASCO has developed tools and resources to support oncology care providers, including those who care for underserved populations.

Learn more about how to implement ASCO’s quality improvement programs at your practice.

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