Evidence-Based Surgical Care Quality Improvement Programs and Strategies for CAHs (Policy Brief #29)


This report focuses on evidence-based surgical care QI programs and strategies that are applicable to inpatient and outpatient surgeries in CAHs, particularly with respect to MBQIP Phase 2 Measures.

Key Findings:

  • The peer-reviewed literature on surgical care quality improvement (QI) primarily addresses programs and strategies that were implemented as part of the national Surgical Care Improvement Project (SCIP) and reporting of surgical care quality measures to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).
  • These QI programs and strategies focus on improving three aspects of surgical care: 1) prevention of surgical infections; 2) prevention of venous thromboembolism; and 3) prevention of adverse cardiac events.
  • Although few peer-reviewed articles specifically address implementation of surgical care QI programs and strategies in Critical Access Hospitals (CAHs), several programs and strategies have been found to be effective and could be replicated in CAHs.


MBQIP Quality Quality Improvement