"We are your patient safety advocates."
Diplomates of the American Board Of Anesthesiology
At Florida Anesthesia Associates, all our physicians are Board Certified by the American Board of Anesthesiology (Diplomates of the Board). New physicians just graduating from residency programs have to be Board Eligible and have a set period of time in which to become Board Certified. This is a strict requirement in order to become a partner in our group.
CME (Continuing Medical Education)
In order to remain current in our Practice, all our physicians undertake 40 hours of continuing medical education every 2 years as part of their State of Florida licensure renewal. Anesthesiology and the practice of Medicine in general, involves lifelong learning. In order to be able to provide state of the art care to our patients, we believe that keeping up with the latest medical and anesthesiology literature is paramount. We regularly review the latest guidelines and standards of practice based on solid medical evidence in order to be able to provide the best care to our patients. In addition to these 40 hours of CME, our Anesthesiologists (Board Certified after 2000) complete 250 hours of CME as part of their MOCA (Maintenance of Certification in Anesthesiology) requirements. Furthermore, we are required to retake and pass the American Board of Anesthesiology written board examination every 10 years for as long as we practice. This will be replaced by annual participation in the MOCA Minute program from 2016.
Anesthesia Quality Institute (AQI)
Florida Anesthesia Associates is a member of the Anesthesia Quality Institute of the American Society of Anesthesiologists. This involves submitting our clinical outcomes data to the National Anesthesia Clinical Outcomes Registry of the AQI to ensure that we maintain the highest standards in the practice of Anesthesiology. This allows us to assess our own quality of patient care, and to constantly improve it. Currently, only a minority of Anesthesiology groups in the United State have taken this initiative to maintain quality in their practice. We monitor for 45 specific data points including occasionally expected complications such as post dural puncture headache, rare complications such as dental trauma and even more rare and severe complications such as anaphylaxis, cardiac arrest and malignant hyperthermia.
Having a quality assurance program such as this with national benchmarking, allows us to maintain our clinical excellence. Although rare, unexpected clinical outcomes in Medicine and Anesthesiology do occur. Surgery and Anesthesia do involve certain risks, and despite our very best efforts, a poor outcome can unfortunately rarely occur. Becoming aware of a certain outcome allows us to determine its root cause and to subsequently improve our practice as a whole, decreasing the risk of a similar outcome in the future. Over the last few years, based on our AQI data, our groups's incidence of all adverse outcomes has been well below the national average.
PQRS (Physician Quality Reporting System)
Via the ASA QCDR (Qualified Clinical Data Registry), Florida Anesthesia Associates also currently participates in PQRS, a quality reporting system mandated by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. We currently report on 9 different Quality measures across 4 different National Quality Strategy (NQS) domains. These domains include Patient Safety, Communication and Care Coordination, Effective Clinical Care, and Person and Caregiver Centered Experiences and Outcomes.
Clinical Methods to Improve Quality
Anesthesiologists at Florida Anesthesia Associates strive to be strong patient safety advocates for our patients. It is our job to be extremely diligent about your personal welfare whilst undergoing surgery or non-surgical medical procedure at Baptist. We make every effort to thoroughly evaluate your medical condition and determine whether you are ready to undergo your particular procedure or require additional investigations and/or treatment of your medical condition(s) prior to undergoing surgery. This helps to ensure the best outcome possible.
We constantly review and use the latest ASA guidelines and standards in determining best practice, from an optimization of our patients' cardiac and pulmonary status to the evaluation and treatment of Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) prior to your surgery. For example, along with our colleagues in sleep medicine the Baptist OSA program screens for this important disease during the PACE preoperative evaluation process and either starts a preoperative treatment plan and/or ensures enhanced monitoring of these patients postoperatively. Postoperative OSA precautions include continuous pulse oximetry, CPAP use, and the avoidance of narcotics, if possible. These precautions help to decrease postoperative complications from this serious and sometimes lethal disorder.