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Quillen ETSU Pediatrics recognized
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JOHNSON CITY (Nov. 23, 2016) – Quillen ETSU Pediatrics has been recognized for the participation and completion of the first year of the Pediatric Healthcare Improvement Initiative for Tennessee (PHiiT), a statewide quality improvement program of the Tennessee Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics (TNAAP). A special recognition event was held Nov. 22 at the Quillen ETSU Physicians building, 325 N. State of Franklin Road.

“The ETSU Pediatrics Clinic has benefited tremendously from participating in the TNAAP quality improvement program. Under the PHiiT program, we have improved care to patients by increasing our patients’ immunization rates, well-child care visits for children under 2 years of age, breastfeeding support services and improving the screening and treatment of teenage patients for depression,” said Dr. David Wood, chair of the Department of Pediatrics at ETSU’s Quillen College of Medicine. “As a result of participating in this quality improvement program, we have enhanced our mission, which is to improve the health of the children we serve in the ETSU Pediatrics Clinic.”

Quillen ETSU Pediatrics has focused on improving patient and family care by engaging in quality improvement around well-child check-ups, tobacco exposure, breastfeeding, and other early childhood indicators. Dr. Gayatri Bala Jaishankar, the clinic team leader, reviewed practice data and reports and developed and implemented plans to improve the systems of patient care. Approximately 6,248 patients have been impacted by the improvements made in the clinic. 

During this year-long process, the ETSU pediatrics team identified a need for a tool to screen for social determinants of health for their patients and families. This led to the development and integration of the “We Care Screener” to determine resource needs of patients and families.

The team began its quality improvement work in October 2015 with training and education of physicians, pediatric residents, nurses and administrative staff and will continue with the initiative as they focus on creating a Patient Centered Medical Home and improving asthma care for their patients. 

“The PHiiT projects have enabled us to move forward with our integrated model of practice with embedded Behavioral Health, Social Work, Lactation and Care Coordination services in our clinic,” said Jaishankar. “We hope to continue working on asthma care for our patients, ADHD services and Patient Centered Medical Home initiatives, including a Dental Home.” Jaishankar said. 

PHiiT is a statewide pediatric practice improvement partnership that develops and implements quality improvement projects focusing on pediatric health concerns that have/are high cost, have high morbidity rates, are consistent with state and federal priorities, and have poor outcomes. These pediatric health concerns are recognized by healthcare providers as opportunities to innovate how healthcare is accessed, delivered and experienced.  For more information, please visit  

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