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ASCO Launches New Quality Department

Jun 22, 2011

In the spring, ASCO announced the formation of a new Quality Department, which is tasked with building the next generation of the Society’s quality programs. In addition to developing clinical practice guidelines and other tools to support evidence-based care, the new department is leading efforts to advance adoption of health information technology, oversee QOPI® and the QOPI Certification Program, develop performance measurement and quality improvement programs, and builda robust registry that can supportreal-time data capture from theclinical setting.

In an ASCOconnection.org blog on the new department, ASCO Immediate Past President George W. Sledge, Jr., MD, wrote: “We can and should take first steps toward the integration of guidelines and performance measures in an electronic medical record environment. The Board believes that ASCO can play an important role in this enterprise: far better that we develop and apply standards to ourselves than having them imposed from outside.”

ASCO CEO Allen S. Lichter, MD, further explained that the time was right to embark on this new course: “Over the past several years, ASCO members’ focus on quality initiatives has increased and will continue to intensify in the coming months and years.”

According to Interim Senior Director Deborah Kamin, RN, PhD, Senior Director of ASCO’s Cancer Policy and Clinical Affairs Department, “The Society wants to unite and leverage the respective strengths of our three quality initiatives—guidelines, performance measurement, and health information technology—in ways that sustain a rapid learning health system for oncology.”

In mid-June, Robert S. Hauser, PharmD, PhD, joined ASCO as Senior Director of the Quality Department. Dr. Hauser has more than 15 years of experience in health economic and strategy planning services related to clinical trial development, oncology registries, EHR systems, informatics, and business development.

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