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The Tidelands Health Newsroom

Published on November 10, 2006

Georgetown Hospital System Hosts the Institute for Health Care Improvement

Friday, November 10, 2006

Georgetown, SC - Georgetown Hospital System hosted a team from the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) during an early November site visit. The group met with Georgetown Hospital System administrators, physicians, nurses and others to hear about the organization’s implementation of the 6 IHI safety initiatives.

During the session, Georgetown Hospital System personnel outlined successes in developing a Medication Tool Kit and establishing Rapid Response Teams, both IHI patient safety initiatives.

The Medication Tool Kit project was designed to improve medication safety by establishing a universal communication process and tool. To date, more than 23,000 Universal Medication Forms have been distributed to community members by the Georgetown Hospital System implementation team. Numerous educational presentations have been provided for church, community and civic groups. The project was cited by Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO) as a “best practice” during a 2006 facility survey.

Rapid Response Teams (RRT) are now in place at both Georgetown Memorial Hospital and Waccamaw Community Hospital. This project included policy and protocol development for activation of the RRT to assist in assessment of a patient who appears to be in distress before an adverse event occurs. Part of the effort included development of a RRT Toolbox and a communication methodology that helps to avoid a “Code Blue”.

Hospital officials and IHI team members also discussed “grass root” implementation challenges faced at the local level. Ample notification of intended initiative roll-outs and the value of adequate baseline data collection were among topics discussed. Following the presentation at Georgetown Memorial Hospital, IHI officials toured Waccamaw Community Hospital in Murrells Inlet.

The Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) is a not-for-profit organization leading the improvement of health care throughout the world. For more information about IHI visit them online at


Tidelands Health is the region’s largest health care provider and MUSC Health affiliate, serving the Carolinas at four hospitals and more than 60 outpatient locations. More than 2,500 employee, physician and volunteer partners work side by side with our communities to transform the health of our region – promoting wellness, preventing illness, encouraging recovery and restoring health.