Second I-PrACTISE Conference held In Madison, WI
The National Collaborative for Improving Primary Care Through Industrial and Systems Engineering (I-PrACTISE) held its second meeting in Madison, WI March 9 – 11, 2014. This collaborative, which was started by the late Ben-Tzion Karsh, Ph.D., has brought together primary care clinicians and industrial engineers over a 13 year period to use the tools and methods of engineering to improve the quality of primary care while improving the quality of work life for clinicians and staff.
The launch of this conference began on March 9th with a welcome reception honoring the life and work of Professor Ben-Tzion (“Bentzi”) Karsh, and was attended by a total of 55 colleagues, friends and family members as well as conference attendees from Madison and the US. There was a spirit to carry forward Bentzi’s memory and expand the creative educational and research network he started.
The I-PrACTISE Conference was attended by 69 participants, with a total of 52 participants coming from WI. There were 22 experts in Primary Care, 15 experts in Engineering and the remainder from other related disciplines including psychology, nursing, pharmacy, administration and medical informatics. We had a total of 16 graduate level students and primary care residents who participated!
The conference opened with a plenary talk by Mark Friedberg, MD, a natural scientist from the Rand Corporation who spoke on “The Evidence Base for Improving Primary Care“. This talk was followed by three brief oral statements of interest made by John Beasley, MD and Pascale Carayon, PhD. The start of eight of the 15 minute Podium Presentations followed these comments, 2 held concurrently over a brief one and a half hour time frame.
This conference allowed both primary care and engineering researchers as well as other field researchers to present a “nutshell” of their research projects to the participants of the conference. Some of the research presented was a product of the collaborations stemming from the 2013 I-PrACTISE Conference. Participants could choose which presentation they wanted to attend. There was a balanced mix of research describing the interventions of Industrial and Systems Engineering (ISyE) approaches in Primary Care models or the collaborations between the two fields.
In the afternoon, participants were invited to attend one of two concurrent 90-minute workshops. There were a total of 4 workshops planned. The conferences held back to back were a combination of addressing primary care issues as well as addressing the improvement of health care through ISyE.
The evening dinner was enhanced by attendees selecting a dinner table group based on a defined issue discussion raised throughout the day. Of particular note was one table of attendees who decided to spearhead a journal worthy paper describing clinicians’ successes and/or disappointments in their practices that an ISyE approach might be utilized to further understand.
Richard Holden, PhD’s keynote address, “ISyE Science and Primary Care” introduced the next mornings’ activities. A lively discussion followed and then the remainder of the Podium Presentations.
Finally the Conference ended with a Panel Presentation by Christine Sinsky MD and Enid Montague, PhD “Towards Evidence Based Policy and Technology in Primary Care” that engaged the audience in creating a wiki to answer the questions of policy and technology in Primary Care. The wiki will be available on the I-PrACTISE website.
Future Calls to Action
This 2014 I-PrACTISE conference succeeded by increasing local and national collaborations, not only through networking but also through web presentations and online teamwork. The long-term collaboration between primary health care and ISyE has solidified. We are building an evidence base now with more capacity for alliances, more research capacity and therefore can improve the delivery of primary care to patients.
We learned however, we need to focus more on securing partnerships with policy makers who make policies that make common sense and serve a purpose. We also know we need to engage patients and their families in these associations with policy makers, health care professionals and industrial systems engineers.
Schedule / Agenda Overview
2014 I-PrACTISE Schedule
Mark William Friedberg, MD, MS, MPP
Mark William Friedberg, MD, MS, MPP, is a natural scientist, at the RAND Corporation and a practicing general internist. He is also a professor at the Pardee RAND Graduate School. His research focuses on performance improvement by health care providers, innovations in primary care, and methods for measuring health system quality and efficiency. Friedberg has developed and fielded surveys of patients, physicians, medical group leaders and other clinical staff. His clinical work has included ambulatory primary care and hospital-based internal medicine, and he is a clinical instructor in medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School.
Video: The Evidence Base for Improving Primary Care