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Using Regional Groups and Peer Learning to Improve HIV Care


Using Regional Groups and Peer Learning to Improve HIV Care
Lori DeLorenzo, RN, MSN
Coach, National Quality Center

Information Dissemination: monthly newsletters, websites, publications, exhibits, QI awards
Training and Educational Fora: monthly webinars, advanced trainings, online QI tutorials
Consultation: On/off-site coaching of recipients to advance their clinical quality management programs
Communities of Learning: collaborative, QI campaign, Regional Groups
NationalQualityCenter.org | 212-417-4730
Together, we can make a difference in the lives of people with HIV. NQC provides assistance to RWHAP recipients to improve HIV care since gaps in HIV care still exist and advances are uneven across HIV populations.
over 90% of the 587 RWHAP recipients accessed NQC services
~1,300 individuals (61% of recipients) graduated from 45 three-day advanced trainings
40% of RWHAP recipients received TA and 95% would recommend TA to others
40 online QI tutorials are available; over 35,000 have been taken so far
250 recipients (or over 700 individuals) participated in 25 Regional Groups
51% of all recipients joined the largest HIV QI campaign; viral suppression increased from 70% to 76%, a statistically significant improvement

What are Regional Groups?
Regional Groups (RGs) are peer learning networks facilitated by NQC
RGs aim to accelerate implementation of QI efforts within the context of local complexities and characteristics
RGs assist RWHAP recipients in meeting HRSA's quality management requirements
In the longer term, Regional Groups build sustainable peer learning fora
Wondering how your peers deal with the quality improvement problems you are facing? Looking for local access to others committed to improving HIV care? HIVQUAL Regional Groups can help make these connections.

What are Regional Groups?
While each Regional Group is tailored to their respective needs and styles, they have the following common characteristics:
To involve regional Ryan White recipients of all RWHAP funding streams
To meet 2 to 4 times a year, either in person or virtually (face-to-face meetings typically last 4 hours while virtual meetings last 1-2 hours)
To be supported by NQC coaches and local quality champions
To collaborate on jointly agreed quality improvement projects
To review comparative data reports among group members
To share interventions that have resulted in improvements
"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed it is the only thing that ever has." Margaret Mead

NQC History with Regional Groups
The HIVQUAL Project started Regional Groups nationally as a way to increase local opportunities for recipients to improve HIV care and strengthen clinical quality management programs
There are currently 25 Regional Groups throughout the U.S.
About 257 RWAHP recipients (and more than 700 individuals) participate in Regional Groups, representing more than 43% of all RWHAP recipients
The Regional Group model has been widely accepted by the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program community as an important catalyst for quality improvement
Regional Group participants demonstrate statistically significant improvements on key performance measures

Evaluation Methodology
To evaluate the extent to which RGs achieve their intended goals, including:
Enhance the capacity for QI through peer learning and peer sharing
Improve HIV care at the agency level and advance local QM programs
Jointly meet HIV/AIDS Bureau CQM expectations and requirements
Improve the care coordination care and ability of local providers to work together
Align local improvement activities with state/national priorities
Data sources:
Key informant interviews
RG participation surveys (completed by NQC staff and RG coaches)
in+care data submissions
OA data


Uptake of Regional Groups
As of the end of 2013, Regional Groups are supported in 9 out of 10 HRSA-defined Public Health Service regions
Overview of Regional Groups for the calendar years of 2012-2013

# of active RGs
# of unduplicated Members in RGs
% of unduplicated Recipients in RGs
Average # of Members/per RG

Organizational Assessment Findings
RG members who attended 100% of RG meetings in 2013 (n=89, 57%) showed higher mean scores on 9 of 11 OA categories
For RG members engaged for 4+ years (n=87) vs less than 4 years (n=71):
Mean score for G1 (monitor patient outcomes) was significantly higher for RG members engaged for 4+ years
Number of recipients scoring 3 or higher on C1 (performance data for QI), D1 (implement QI initiatives), and G1 (monitor patient outcomes) significantly higher for RG members engaged for 4+ years than those engaged <4 years


Organizational Assessment Findings
Among RG members with at least 1 OA as of 2013 (n = 158), the mean and standard deviation (SD), percent scoring 3 or higher for most recent OA

Bold = significant at p < 0.05

OA category
RG members engaging in 3+ RG activities
in 2013 (n=91)
RG members engaging in < 3 RG activities
in 2013 (n=67)

Mean (SD)
% >3
Mean (SD)
% >3
A1: Senior leadership
3.42 (1.07)
2.88 (0.99)
A2: Quality committee
3.12 (1.26)
2.73 (1.58)
A3: Quality plan
2.78 (1.38)
2.63 (1.45)
B1: Staff engagement in QI
2.78 (1.15)
2.22 (1.06)
B2: Staff satisfaction
2.36 (1.81)
1.96 (1.81)
C1: Performance data for QI
3.45 (1.18)
3.10 (1.35)
D1: Implement QI Initiatives
3.00 (1.16)
2.34 (1.40)
E1: Consumer Engagement
2.98 (1.13)
2.87 (1.38)
F1: Evaluation of HIV Program
2.51 (1.38)
2.12 (1.50)
G1: Monitor Patient Outcomes
2.95 (1.24)
2.22 (1.28)
G2: Measure Disparities
1.60 (1.44)
1.25 (1.43)

Outcomes of in+care Performance Measures (Dec 2011-Dec 2013)
Gap Measure: RG members had a statistically significant lower percentage of clients with a gap in care compared to non-RG members
Medical Frequency: RG members had a statistically significant higher percentage of clients with medical visits in each 6-month period compared to non-RG members
Viral Load Suppression: RG members had a higher percentage of clients with viral suppression compared to non-RG members

Qualitative Findings
Improvement in quality of relationship across Part funding
Support systems ("camaraderie") is a highly valued outcome of participation in Regional Group activities
Participants notice an increase in quality of patient care at the clinic level
Participation in Regional Group activities promote participants' role as quality leaders in their home agency

RG members are seeing an improvement in quality of patient care
Cross-Part participation in RGs helps to drive RG activities based on local needs that align with state/local priorities
RG members see an increase in provider collaboration through RG activities
Participants have a better understanding of HRSA and national priorities
Regional Groups are effective opportunities to share regional solutions to national public health priorities

If you are not currently involved in a RG, look for one in your area and join!
If you are involved, sign up to be a leader or Co-chair for an existing RG
If you are a RG leader or Co-chair, mentor others

NQC is excited to offer a variety
of learning opportunities for you during the RW Conference.

Think big and start small.
NationalQualityCenter.org | 212-417-4730

Lori DeLorenzo, RN, [email protected].net540-951-0576