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SMART Study Funded


Please join me in congratulating Dr. Ann McAlearney and her team on their R-01 grant application, “Searching for Management Approaches to Reduce HAI Transmission (SMART),”  being successfully funded by the Agency for Health Research and Quality (AHRQ)!

The study, titled “Searching for Management Approaches to Reduce HAI Transmission (SMART),” funded by the Agency for Health Research and Quality (AHRQ), is designed to identify the organizational and structural practices that are associated with better performance at reducing and preventing healthcare-associated infections (HAIs). This five-year project will focus on CLABSIs and CAUTIs, and involve both ICUs and medical/surgical units. It aims to create a generalizable management practice toolkit that can then be leveraged in the improvement of other HAI outcomes.

By developing, validating and deploying a national HAI Management Practice Guideline Survey, first across Ohio hospitals, then with hospital partners nationwide, the SMART project seeks to develop a toolkit focused on providing the information necessary to successfully “make healthcare safer” by providing both guidance about the extent to which variability in contextual factors exists within a healthcare setting, and its impact on attenuating the potential success of the AHRQ CUSP toolkit. The SMART toolkit developed will contain three components: (1) an Online Survey Platform, (2) Visualization and Dash boarding, and (3) an Implementation Training Program. The SMART toolkit will be broadly disseminated, and hospitals will be able to use this toolkit to answer the questions – how is my hospital doing, in both absolute and relative terms, and what can I do to impact my outcomes – using real-time reporting tools and with guidance about implementing structural management practices that have proved effective at improving patient safety at other hospitals across the nation.

The SMART Research Team will consist of Dr. Ann McAlearney as the Principal Investigator who will lead all components of the study, Dr. Timothy Huerta as Co-Investigator leading the quantitative data analysis, Dr. Susan Moffatt-Bruce as Co-Investigator and clinical collaborator, Dr. Erinn Hade as Co-Investigator employing her quantitative methodological expertise to ensure the integrity of the study, Dr. Courtney Hebert as Co-Investigator providing clinical and epidemiological expertise, and  Drs. Cynthia Sieck and Jennifer Hefner as Co-Investigators providing their expertise with qualitative and quantitative methods for data analysis.

Michele Grove, BSN, and  Dr. Jacalyn Buck will assist with refinement and pilot testing of study tools prior to implementation, interpretation of study data, and dissemination of research results.

Additional Research Team Members supporting this study include Ms. Caitlin Slevin, DFM Project Manager, Dr. Daniel Walker, Post-Doctoral Researcher, Ms. Lindsey Sova, DFM Research Associate, Ms. Alison Aldrich, DFM Research Librarian, and Ms. Pamela Thompson, DFM Administrative Research Coordinator.