NICQ: Newborn Improvement Collaborative for Quality

Resources and Support for NICQ Teams

Small group with faculty

Expert Faculty Dedicated to Homerooms

Every homeroom has dedicated faculty of a QI leader, family leader, and clinical translator. Additional care experts with experience in specific clinical practices  applicable across multiple transitions of care float among all homerooms.

The QI Leader is an expert in quality improvement methodology and is the team leader for the homeroom.

The Family Leader is a parent of a child with real world experiences in the NICU and has had extensive training and experience with quality improvement with VON.

The Clinical Translator is a NICU clinician with experience applying quality improvement methods in a clinical setting and helps teams bridge the gap between QI science and the clinical experience.

Implementing Evidence into Practice

Toolkits with change ideas and potentially better practices rooted in evidence are available to teams for every phase of care. Faculty skilled in the clinical application of evidence through disciplined QI methods guide teams as they implement changes to policies and practices.

VON uses the term “potentially better practices” to indicate that no practice is better or best until adapted, tested, and shown to work in the local context. Measurement and reporting available through VON help teams understand how the changes are affecting care at their center.

Sequence to Achieve Chang

Measurement for Data-Driven Decisions

Homeroom faculty teams identify key VON data items to inform special data reports that will be provided annually. These reports foster transparency to support sharing and learning within NICQ Homerooms.

All Quality Circle members participating in NICQ and/or iNICQ for critical transitions participate in VON Day Audits, twice annual point-prevalence quality audits that include unit-level and patient-level measures and occur on a single day, selected by the local site, during a 2-week period.

Previous audits have shown variability in the systems of care supporting critical NICU transitions and identified areas for improvement.

Sequence to Achieve Change

Sequence to Achieve Change

VON has developed its Sequence to Achieve Change that navigates teams through steps to optimize their quality improvement work.

This structured approach to QI integrates key aspects of VON’s successful approach that includes teamwork, families as partners, evidence-based potentially better practices, and iterative tests of change.

pdsa cycle

QI Foundations for Entire Center

As part of the Quality Circle center-level membership, staff at the entire center participating in NICQ can take advantage of VON’s online resources, including the QI Foundations course.

The VON QI Foundations online course covers standard QI methodology with an additional focus on families as partners and teamwork. We believe these factors are integral to improvement.

Building a foundation of QI fundamentals for all staff spurs improvement across all phases of care.

This QI education and training is important to build a shared foundation for all members of the NICQ team, other departments, and all health care professionals involved in providing high quality care for infants and families.