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Beyond the Q [Video]
2015 Impact Report
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Online Learning Center
Check out the News tab below to read updates and announcements about NICHQ. Click on the Events tab to learn about events where you can hear NICHQ team members presenting about the impact of our work.
NICHQ Expands Portfolio to Include Focus on Early Childhood Social and Emotional Development
The Einhorn Family Charitable Trust has commissioned NICHQ to develop recommendations for interventions to positively shape the healthy social and emotional development of children ages 0-5.
NICHQ’s Charlie Homer Named Deputy Assistant Secretary for Human Services Policy in the US Department of Health & Human Services
NICHQ is pleased to announce that Charlie Homer, MD, MPH, NICHQ’s co-founder and long-standing President and CEO, has been appointed to the position of Deputy Assistant Secretary for Human Services Policy in the Office of The Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) of the US Department of Health & Human Services (HHS), effective April 6.
National Movement to Reduce Infant Mortality Sets Top Six Strategies; NICHQ Continues Leadership Role
The six strategic focus areas of the Collaborative Improvement and Innovation Network (CoIIN) to Reduce Infant Mortality were announced today, along with a shift to a national approach of one CoIIN encompassing all regions of the United States. NICHQ remains the lead quality improvement and technical assistance organization charged with supporting the infant mortality CoIIN.
Indiana Moms and Babies to Benefit from New Breastfeeding Initiative
NICHQ and the Indiana State Department of Health are teaming up to increase breastfeeding rates in Indiana. The new project will provide the state with a roadmap for connecting and coordinating the state’s many public health, hospital and community efforts to ultimately drive a cultural shift in Indiana to increase exclusive breastfeeding.
NICHQ Selected to Join Expert Leaders Group in New Safe Sleep Collaborative
NICHQ Executive Project Director Lauren Smith, MD, MPH, has been selected to join an Expert Leadership Group to guide the National Action Partnership to Promote Safe Sleep (NAPPSS) collaborative in making safe infant sleep the national norm.
NICHQ Named National Coordinating Center for New Sickle Cell Disease Treatment Demonstration Program
NICHQ announced today that its role as the National Coordinating Center for the Sickle Cell Disease Treatment Demonstration Program (SCDTDP) has been extended for three more years by the Health Resources and Services Administration.
NICHQ Releases Congressional Report on the Sickle Cell Disease Treatment Demonstration Program Findings; Overview Webinar Dec. 4
NICHQ released a congressional report today on the outcomes from the federally supported Sickle Cell Disease Treatment Demonstration Program (SCDTDP). The report details recommendations for improving care and outcomes for individuals affected by sickle cell disease across three different levels of action: (1) clinical delivery and public health programs, (2) design or re-design of the SCDTDP and (3) broad health policy. A 60-minute webinar Dec. 4 at 3 p.m. ET will provide an overview of the results and recommendations stemming from the SCDTDP.
NICHQ CEO Delivers Keynote at Early Years Collaborative in Scotland
NICHQ CEO Charlie Homer, MD, MPH, delivered the opening plenary to over 500 participants at the June learning session for the Early Years Collaborative (EYC) in Scotland. Watch videos of Dr. Homer's keynote address as well as his reflections on the EYC.
Lauren Smith Named Executive Project Director
NICHQ announced today that Lauren A. Smith, MD, MPH, has been named the executive project director for the Collaborative Improvement and Innovation Network (CoIIN) to Reduce Infant Mortality project.
Anand Named Chief Health Officer
Shikha Anand, MD, MPH, has joined NICHQ’s executive team as the Chief Health Officer. In this role she leads the programs and evaluation departments and provides leadership and guidance on NICHQ's content and evaluation strategy, business development, and standardization of protocols and metrics across NICHQ's programs.
NICHQ Introduces New Website and New “Look”
NICHQ has unveiled a new website and a new look for the organization. This is the final step in the process of rebranding the organization, which began earlier this year when NICHQ changed its name.
NICHQ Launches Quality Improvement Project to Increase Breastfeeding Rates in New York
NICHQ and the New York State Department of Health (DOH) are teaming up to help hospitals improve their breastfeeding rates. A new, five-year quality improvement project will guide nearly 80 hospitals in creating environments that support breastfeeding and reduce racial, ethnic and economic disparities in New York State breastfeeding rates.
NICHQ to Help Improve Pediatric Care for NEQCA
The New England Quality Care Alliance (NEQCA), a network of almost 1,800 physicians affiliated with Tufts Medical Center, has engaged NICHQ to help it enhance health care access for children across its network and expand its pediatric presence in Massachusetts.
Dr. Lauren Smith Joins NICHQ
Lauren A. Smith, MD, MPH, has joined the NICHQ team as the Senior Strategic Advisor on the Infant Mortality Collaborative Improvement and Innovation Network (CoIIN) project. Dr. Smith is a pediatrician and nationally recognized public health leader whose research and policy career has focused on health disparities and the impact of public policies on child health and wellbeing.
NICHQ Announces Name Change
NICHQ announced today that it has changed its name from “National Initiative for Children’s Healthcare Quality” to “National Institute for Children’s Health Quality.” The name change reflects changes in NICHQ that have been true for some time – most notably our broad focus on the systems that produce health.
NICHQ Leading National Initiative to Reduce Infant Mortality
This multi-year national initiative engages federal, state, and local leaders, public and private agencies, professionals and communities to employ quality improvement, innovation and collaborative learning to tackle this persistent wound in the body of our nation’s health.
NICHQ Expands Effort to Incorporate Healthy Weight Plans into Electronic Health Records to Help Address Childhood Obesity
NICHQ is continuing its efforts to address childhood obesity by extending its pioneering work on incorporating healthy weight plans into electronic health records (EHRs). Healthy weight plans are documents jointly developed by families and their primary care providers that specify which health behaviors — diet, physical activity, television watching, etc. — families will seek to improve, and how they will do it.
NICHQ's Tracy Munro Honored for Role in Helping Marathon Bombing Victim
NICHQ is proud to share that the Knights of Columbus in Beverly, Massachusetts has awarded Tracy Munro the 2013 "Keepers Award" for her part in helping 7 year old Jane Richard after the bombs went off at the finish line of the Boston Marathon April 15.
NICHQ and the DentaQuest Institute Commit to Improving Children's Oral Health Across the Country
The DentaQuest Institute and NICHQ (the National Initiative for Children’s Healthcare Quality) have begun a third phase of improvement work to better dental care for children. The DentaQuest Institute’s initiative aims to refine and spread a disease management model to address preventable tooth decay in children.
Nemours and NICHQ Partner to Prevent Childhood Obesity
Nemours and NICHQ (the National Initiative for Children’s Healthcare Quality) are partnering on a new project to assist early care and education (ECE) providers in improving the quality of care they provide to young children with respect to nutrition, breastfeeding support, physical activity and screen time. The aim is to spread sustainable policy and practice improvements in ECE programs to prevent childhood obesity.
NICHQ CEO Testifies at Boston City Council Hearing on Sickle Cell Disease
NICHQ President and CEO Charles Homer, MD, MPH, was one of nine panelists who testified before the Boston City Council’s Committee on Labor, Youth Affairs and Health on June 6 about the need for greater support for patients with sickle cell disease (SCD).
NICHQ Participates in Boston Moves for Health's First-Ever Flash Mob to Promote National Walking Day
The Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) and Harbor Health Services teamed up on April 2 to hold a community walk and flash mob Zumba workout in celebration of National Public Health Week and to promote National Walking Day.
NICHQ and Avalere Health Assist the PHA to Incorporate Healthy Weight Plans into Electronic Medical Records
Avalere Health LLC and the National Initiative for Children’s Healthcare Quality (NICHQ) joined the Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA) today as PHA announced the commitment of three electronic health record (EHR) companies to incorporate healthy weight plans in their core products.
Breastfeeding Gets Boost in Texas
The first 20 hospitals have been selected for a five-year statewide project to increase breastfeeding rates. A total of 81 sites will participate.
NICHQ Welcomes Two New Board Members
NICHQ recently added two new members to its board of directors. Cristin Lind and Scott O’Gorman both bring a passion for ensuring access to quality healthcare and services for underserved populations.
It Takes a Village, Or a City, to Tackle Obesity
The success the city of Fitchburg, Mass., is having in reducing childhood obesity rates is drawing praise. The town was recently featured in an NPR piece for its multidisciplinary approach to tackling obesity.
NICHQ to Help Develop New Technology Recommendations for Sickle Cell Patients
NICHQ announces a new collaboration with the healthcare consulting firm The Lewin Group to improve the care of people with sickle cell disease. The project, “Improving Sickle Cell Transitions of Care through Health Information Technology: Phase 1,” will explore developing an innovative tool to help sickle cell patients manage their care.
NICHQ Launches Quality Improvement Project to Increase Breastfeeding Rates in Texas
NICHQ continues its work to support breastfeeding with the announcement of a new partnership with the state of Texas. A five-year quality improvement project will guide 81 hospitals in creating environments that support the initiation of exclusive breastfeeding at birth and continued breastfeeding for up to six months.
NICHQ Recognizes Sickle Cell Awareness Month in September
September is Sickle Cell Awareness Month, an important opportunity to draw attention to a disorder that affects as many as 100,000 people in the U.S. and one out of every 500 African American babies. To mark the occasion, NICHQ and its partner organizations are raising awareness of the important improvements being made through the Working to Improve Sickle Cell Healthcare (WISCH) project.
Op-Ed: Better Starts for Breastfeeding
Op Ed by NICHQ's Marianne McPherson, Ph.D., M.S., and Karthi Streb, M.P.H.
NICHQ CEO Charlie Homer Interviewed in June Issue of Childhood Obesity
Dr. Homer talks specifically about NICHQ's Collaborate for Healthy Weight project, which recently entered its second phase with the addition of 40 new teams to the initial group of 10.
NICHQ Launches Unprecedented National Effort to Increase Breastfeeding Rates in US Hospitals
NICHQ announced a first-of-its-kind effort to significantly improve breastfeeding rates in states where rates are currently the lowest.
A Nationwide Effort Finds Success in Improving Follow-Up for Infant Hearing Screenings
Thousands of babies have no records of having follow-up treatment after failing a newborn hearing test. Parents, hearing screening services, audiologists and quality improvement experts are partnering together in the Improving Hearing Screening & Intervention Systems (IHSIS) project to close the gap of babies lost to follow-up.
Best Fed Beginnings Concludes Successful Recruitment
It felt like New Year's Eve in the NICHQ office on the afternoon of Friday, May 4. As 5 o’clock approached, the Best Fed Beginnings team huddled together and began its countdown: “10 – 9 – 8 – 7 – 6 – 5 – 4 – 3 – 2 – 1…!” Although there was no singing, there were more than a few high fives to celebrate a successful recruitment process that resulted in the submission of 235 applications from hospitals across the country, including states with no or very few hospitals with Baby-Friendly designation.
NICHQ Highlights Infant Hearing Screening Program during Better Hearing and Speech Month
In recognition of May as Better Hearing and Speech Month, the National Institute for Children’s Healthcare Quality (NICHQ) has developed a diagram to illustrate how infants are lost in the hearing screening process.
NICHQ Helps Autism Treatment Centers as Prevalence Rates Rise
More children are being diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) than ever before, according to a study recently released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). To address this need, NICHQ has established the Collaborative to Improve Care for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder in coordination with the Autism Treatment Network (ATN) and its Clinical Coordinating Center housed at Massachusetts General Hospital.
NICHQ Welcomes Dr. Shikha Anand to New Director Position
NICHQ is delighted to announce that Shikha Anand, MD, MPH, has joined our staff as Director of Strategic Alliances and Initiatives and Obesity Program Director.
Experts Weigh In on Boosting Breastfeeding Support
On March 7, 2012, NICHQ gathered nationally known experts in maternity care to recommend strategies for improving hospital practices to support breastfeeding. These strategies will set the basis for the country-wide improvement program, Best Fed Beginnings, run by NICHQ and supported by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in close partnership with Baby-Friendly USA.
NICHQ CEO Charlie Homer Speaks on Panel with US Surgeon General
US Surgeon General Regina Benjamin addressed a packed audience of healthcare professionals Wednesday night at Harvard Medical School as she discussed the nation’s first National Prevention Strategy. The panel event, organized by Doctors for America and co-sponsored by NICHQ, outlined ways in which prominent organizations are encouraging a broad, collaborative vision of healthcare in parallel with the national strategy.
Commentary by Charlie Homer Published in March Issue of Pediatrics
The March issue of Pediatrics includes a commentary by NICHQ president and CEO Charlie Homer, MD, MPH, entitled "Moving Toward Better Measures." Reflecting on the many reasons for renewed interest in quality measurement in child health, Dr. Homer writes: "So what does this mean for the practicing pediatrician? It means we will increasingly be asked to measure our performance..."
Communities From Across the Nation Now Taking Part in "Collaborate for Healthy Weight" Initiative
The second phase of a national effort to combat obesity, “Collaborate for Healthy Weight,” is being announced today by NICHQ, in partnership with the Health Resources and Services Administration.
NICHQ Continues Two-Year Trend of Staff Growth
As NICHQ’s project list continues to grow, so has its staff list. In the last two months, NICHQ has welcomed seven new employees, bringing the staff to 35 workers strong.
Be Our Voice Continues to Amplify Local Childhood Obesity Projects
NICHQ’s Be Our Voice childhood obesity advocacy project is taking on a life of its own. Nearly 150 healthcare professionals have been trained in childhood obesity policy advocacy in the last 6 months independent of NICHQ faculty.
CHIPRA Massachusetts Medical Home Initiative Announces Teams
The CHIPRA Massachusetts Medical Home Initiative announced the 13 pediatric practices that will participate in the project. Over the course of five years, pediatric practices across the state will implement a “medical home” model of care.
NICHQ to Participate in Obesity Prevention Campaigns in Two Massachusetts Communities
NICHQ Welcomes Tom Dahlborg as New Vice President
NICHQ is pleased to announce that Thomas Dahlborg, MSM, has joined the executive staff as vice president for strategy and project director. Mr. Dahlborg brings 23 years of collaborative leadership experience to NICHQ. His outstanding professional work includes bringing quality improvement to the healthcare arena.
Editorial by NICHQ President and CEO Charlie Homer Published in JAMA
The October 5 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association includes an editorial by NICHQ president and CEO Charlie Homer, MD, MPH. Dr. Homer reviews the results of a study published in the same issue by Morse and colleagues that examines compliance with asthma quality measures at children’s hospitals and subsequent asthma-related outcomes.
NICHQ to Lead National Initiative to Improve Breastfeeding Rates
Through a CDC Award, NICHQ will direct a hospital learning collaborative project to boost the number of US hospitals designated as Baby-Friendly.
NICHQ Launches "Collaborate for Healthy Weight"
NICHQ today announced the kick-off of “Collaborate for Healthy Weight,” a national effort to create multi-faceted, community-based projects to address obesity through innovative partnerships among public health, primary care, and community-based organizations.
NICHQ to Lead National Sickle Cell Disease Newborn Screening Program
September is Sickle Cell Awareness Month, an exciting time for NICHQ to announce a new project that seeks to improve newborn screening and follow up for the disease. The Newborn Screening Program (NBSP) fills out NICHQ’s Sickle Cell portfolio and means that NICHQ’s quality improvement focus will be directed across the entire lifespan of those who suffer with the blood disorder.
NICHQ and CEO Charlie Homer Featured on AHRQ Health Care Innovations Exchange: Paths to Healthy Weight Website
The obesity epidemic is now receiving the attention it deserves, yet some people doubt our nation’s ability to address a public health problem that has emerged so rapidly, is of such magnitude, and has so many causes. NICHQ’s CEO and President Charles Homer, MD, MPH, does not “share in either the pessimism about our capacity to reverse the epidemic, nor the reluctance to act in the presence of uncertainty.”
NICHQ Releases Report on Changing Pediatric Residency Training to Improve Quality of Care for Children and Youth with Special Healthcare Needs
A large percentage of children and youth with special healthcare needs do not have an established Family Centered Medical Home nor do they obtain comprehensive, coordinated from other sources. Rather, these children and their families often depend primarily on pediatric subspecialists who address the individual medical issues for which they are trained, resulting in families experiencing inadequate care coordination and lack of integration of health services.
NICHQ CEO Charlie Homer Appointed to Secretary's Advisory Committee on Heritable Disorders in Newborns and Children
NICHQ President and CEO Charles Homer, MD, MPH, has been appointed by Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius to serve on the Secretary's Advisory Committee on Heritable Disorders in Newborns and Children as part of the Health Resources and Services Administration.
NICHQ to Lead National Sickle Cell Disease Prevention and Treatment Demonstration Program
Against the backdrop of the 100-year anniversary of the discovery of the sickle cell, NICHQ today announced it has been awarded a $3.5 million grant from the Department of Health and Human Services/Health Resources and Services Administration to improve care and outcomes for individuals with Sickle Cell Disease.
NICHQ Tapped to Create and Manage National Prevention Center for Healthy Weight
NICHQ announced today it has been awarded a $5 million grant from the US Department of Health and Human Services to help address the obesity epidemic. NICHQ will lead a consortium of organizations to establish a national Prevention Center for Healthy Weight for the Health Services and Resources Administration.
Remembering Polly Arango
Ten years ago, when we at NICHQ were forming our first board of directors, we knew we needed someone who could bring the parent perspective to bear on the shape of our efforts to make healthcare better for children and for our organization. We learned of Polly Arango through her role on the advisory board for the Institute for Healthcare Improvement's Pursuing Perfection project.
NICHQ CEO Dr. Charles J. Homer Featured in ABC News Article on Asthma Intervention Programs
By taking steps outside the confines of their own facilities, more and more hospitals have been able to keep their asthmatic patients from showing up at their emergency rooms as often. But ironically, programs aimed at improving asthmatic patient's quality of life may be hurting these hospitals' bottom line.
NICHQ Celebrates Tenth Birthday; Honors Outstanding Healthcare Leaders with Individual and Program Awards
At the Annual Forum for Improving Children’s Healthcare and Childhood Obesity Congress, which brought together hundreds of healthcare professionals, the National Institute for Children’s Health Quality (NICHQ) celebrated its tenth birthday and honored several outstanding healthcare leaders with individual and programmatic awards.
NICHQ to Participate in Two CHIPRA Demonstration Grant Programs
NICHQ is pleased to announce that it will be participating in two of 10 demonstration grants being provided to states to improve quality of care for children. In both programs NICHQ will support the establishment and spread of primary care medical homes.
NICHQ Launches Advocacy Website to Train Health Professionals in the Fight Against Childhood Obesity
At www.nichq.org/advocacy, healthcare professionals will find information and tools to assist them in advocating for improvements to their communities’ physical environment. The interactive site will connect healthcare professionals with others looking to make a greater impact, and both can learn from stories of leaders who have been successful in creating positive change in their communities.
NICHQ Announces Eight Awards to Organizations Fighting Childhood Obesity
Eight organizations have received awards of $15,000 each as part of the Mobilizing Healthcare Professionals as Community Leaders in the Fight Against Childhood Obesity program.
Improving Performance on Breastfeeding Measures group coaching program
NICHQ’s Improving Performance on Breastfeeding Measures group coaching program provides hospitals with coaching on how to hardwire change to improve perinatal care. Topics include breastfeeding and supplementation policies, measurement and using data to drive change.
AWHONN Annual Convention 2015
Join NICHQ at AWHONN's Annual Convention, a five-day experience that provides knowledge, tools and professional networking to nurses and healthcare professionals.
Patient & Family Centered Care Partners Annual Conference
Join NICHQ at the Patient & Family Centered Care Partners Annual Conference, a two-day experience that encourages patients and families to partner with the healthcare community for improvement.
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