Website spotlight: Turning Joint Commission survey preparation into a treat

Staff Development Weekly: Insight on Evidence-Based Practice in Education, May 20, 2011

One of the ongoing challenges for Joint Commission survey coordinators is also one of the most simple to put into words: How do we put Joint Commission educational materials into the hands of our staff?

Sometimes the trick is to turn survey preparation and accreditation education into something fun, rather than simply something required. As the old saying goes, "You can catch more flies with honey than vinegar," or in the case of Ministry Saint Michael's Hospital in Stevens Point, WI, you can connect with more staff with ice cream. The hospital has had great success by turning a simple concept—essentially an ice-cream social—into an opportunity to reach staff on all levels to provide education on Joint Commission compliance.

The trick, as accreditation manager Anne Radtke explains, is how the information is distributed.

Radtke and her Joint Commission team members arranged a large conference room into booths with tables on which the various components of the ice-cream sundaes were distributed. It sounds simple enough, right?

But in order to build the complete sundae, staff members had to answer questions about specific chapters of The Joint Commission's requirements. That's right—from the get-go, staff were faced with Medication Management chapter questions before they could pick up their bowl and head for the next table that held the ice cream.

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