American College Of Surgeons - Inspiring Quality: Highest Standards, Better Outcomes


“Small, rural hospitals need to be involved with a national organization that measures quality of surgical care and establishes collaboratives and mechanisms to improve care. Fortunately, the American College of Surgeons has created an ACS NSQIP module to help address the disadvantages that rural surgeons face. In addition to its continuous backbone data, ACS NSQIP’s rural program provides a support system of colleague peer review and feedback as well as the opportunity to participate in larger groups and get involved in collaboratives with other small, rural hospitals or with larger regional hospitals. Rural hospitals and their patients have much to gain from ACS NSQIP’s rural program.”

Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, Mass.
Samuel Finlayson, MD, MPH, FACS


“ACS NSQIP is one of the best programs across the country for clinical outcomes reporting. Over the next five to 10 years, we’ll increasingly need to be up front about outcomes and manage the data effectively. Doing it well now will put physicians and hospitals in good stead. By using ACS NSQIP data, we know that hospitals get better, patients get better care and outcomes are improved. In addition, hospitals reduce their costs, especially from complications, which CMS and commercial payers are increasingly refusing to pay for. By helping us track complications, ACS NSQIP will help us work hard to eliminate them completely.”

Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, Ohio
Mike Henderson, MD, FACS


“We joined ACS NSQIP in 2007, and the data immediately showed us we had too many urinary tract infections. We formed a multi-disciplinary committee and used ACS NSQIP Best Practice Guidelines to develop our own, very intense, protocol. By 2010, we achieved significant reduction in UTIs from 2.6 percent to 1.5 percent – a 62 percent reduction in catheter-associated UTIs that has resulted in lives saved and significant cost savings for our hospital.”

Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center, Hartford, Conn.
Scott J. Ellner, DO, FACS


“We expect that a system-wide application of the pneumonia prevention bundle, and the use of the ACS NSQIP patient risk calculator, will help us save at least 200 lives and millions of dollars each year by cutting our pneumonia mortality rate. It really works. Individual surgeons do not have the capacity to develop such a powerful bundle and risk calculator that save that many lives just by managing their daily practice. ACS NSQIP-based performance improvement and risk calculators are great tools to improve patient care and surgical outcomes.”

Kaiser Permanente Medical Group, Walnut Creek Hospital, Walnut Creek, Calif.
Pascal Fuchshuber, MD, FACS


“ACS NSQIP is the best tool that we’ve ever had to analyze institution-level quality data. Previous institution-level programs have usually been very specific to surgeons or procedures. Now, we have independent nurse reviewers and standardized definitions that allow us to fairly compare ourselves to other institutions and to take the next step to improve quality within our hospitals. Although every institution will have different issues based on case mix, patient risk profiles and technical expertise, ACS NSQIP’s tools can help us drill down to where the problems are and identify what needs improvement.”

MD Anderson Cancer Center – Houston, Texas
Tom Aloia, MD, FACS


“Let’s compare the benefits of ACS NSQIP to baseball. Even though ACS NSQIP has been around for 10 years, we’re still in ‘spring training’ – that is, it’s not too late to join because the season has yet to start. Measuring our performance and making it better for our patients – that’s what ACS NSQIP does. It doesn’t matter how we did last year – ACS NSQIP will help us win now and into the future, and that’s what our profession and our patients need.”

Barnes-Jewish Hospital at Washington University Medical Center, St. Louis, Mo.
Bruce Hall, MD, PhD, FACS


“ACS NSQIP is our driving force to improve surgical quality care. We use the data to really drive our surgical agenda. We start our monthly meetings by looking at our data and developing process improvements. It goes beyond just data collection – if you don’t do anything with the data then you’re not going to get anything out of the program. We use the resources and best practices from the American College of Surgeons and work in multidisciplinary teams to improve surgical outcomes for our patients.”

Henry Ford Hospital, Detroit, Mich.
Jennifer Ritz, RN, BSN, BAA 


“We’ve used the semiannual ACS NSQIP report to demonstrate to our hospital administrators that it has enabled us to reduce the cost of care, an important driver of hospital performance today. Once our leadership saw that ACS NSQIP helped us achieve high quality while keeping costs down, they embraced it and saw it was worth the investment.”

Huntsman Cancer Institute, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah
Sean J. Mulvihill, MD, FACS


“Quality is the cornerstone mission for improving surgical care. Our institution was an early adopter of ACS NSQIP and we use it within the context of multiple quality indicators. Certainly, to improve outcomes a culture change was necessary and we have used many strategies to effect change among the faculty and staff. With our enhanced quality initiatives, including ACS NSQIP, we have seen a 30 percent decrease in claims related to surgical care and an overall decrease in major avoidable adverse events of more than 80 percent.”

Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Chicago, Ill.
Nathaniel Soper, MD, FACS