Markham Stouffville Hospital Readies for Accreditation with Escape Room
November 16, 2018
Markham Stouffville Hospital (MSH) created an interactive escape room to help engage and prepare staff for its Accreditation Survey in September.
Christina Wright, Accreditation Coordinator at MSH, said the escape room was created after staff members requested a more hands-on way to learn about and get ready for the accreditation process.
“We chose a handful of Required Organizational Practices and we created a crime scene scenario in a room,” Wright says. “They had to go in and evaluate the situation, based on the accreditation knowledge they had gained over the past year.”
She adds that the victim’s name was Clark Kent. “We chose Clark Kent specifically because he has a double first name, and part of patient safety is making sure that we are identifying people properly,” Wright says.
Wright notes that the accreditation escape room was attended by a wide range of MSH staff.
“It became the buzz of the organization,” she said. “We had teams come in from Senior Leadership straight through to facilities. We had a very wide range of staff and there was a fun spirit of competition and learning.”
In early November, MSH announced that it was Accredited with Exemplary Standing – Accreditation Canada (AC)’s highest award.
Wright shared that MSH had four surveyors come in to evaluate the organization. “Our accreditation experience was fantastic,” she says.
She notes that the accreditation process allowed staff to showcase the great work they are doing on a daily basis.
“Sometimes, people think that the great work they are doing is simply part of their job,” Wright says. “So it’s really nice to have outside people come in and validate their work and their ideas.”
She adds that the accreditation process is also a great learning opportunity for organizations, as surveyors often share information on what other organizations have done to resolve issues and improve quality as well as safety.
“That knowledge sharing is really nice. It gets people excited about change and improvements,” Wright says.
For patients and families, Wright says the accreditation process lets them know that the organization is constantly gauging quality improvement and patient safety, particularly because it’s voluntary and conducted by a third party.
Wright used her background in Mental Health to focus the accreditation preparation process on empowerment and engagement.
She says that this focus aligned with the unique culture at MSH, which is something AC remarked upon. Despite its considerable growth in recent years, the hospital has worked hard to maintain a warm and collaborative workplace.
“We made it so everybody felt that they had a part in our success because ultimately, they do,” Wright said.
She adds that for MSH, the accreditation process is an ongoing journey of quality improvement.
“We didn’t see accreditation as an event that takes place every four years, but rather as a constant process of quality improvement. It’s an everyday, all day, live it and breathe it culture,” she said.
“We were also very aware that people learn differently, and we ensured that accreditation information was made available online, on paper copy, and through hands-on, creative experiences such as the escape room. We made it a point to address all types of learning,” she says.
Is your organization getting ready for accreditation? Are you looking for ways to get your staff engaged in the accreditation process?