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Story of Measurable Improvement in Public Health

Name of Health Department/Agency: Austin/Travis County Health and Human Services Department
State: TX
Contact Name: Veena Viswanathan
Contact Information:
Date Added: 6/27/2011
Program/Topic Area: Internal communications
QI techniques/tools:  Force-field analysis, Histogram, Pareto Chart, Prioritization Matrix, Bone Diagram, Pre/post test survey
Description of the process and intervention: The goal of the effort was to improve internal agency communication by increasing the percentage of agency managers and supervisors that know the responsible parties to contact for departmental resources and information (for example, agency news, events, announcements, plans, new policies or procedures) from 65 to 90. The root cause of inadequate internal agency communication was found to be a lack of accessibility and centralization of information. The improvement theory was that if department managers and supervisors were provided with departmental resource packets delineating internal and external services, then they will know whom to contact when they need assistance. The intervention included distributing resources packets and posting a department organization chart. A pre/post intervention survey was administered and a Histogram and Pareto chart were used to analyze the data.
Result/outcome: As a result of the dissemination of resource packets, the number of managers and supervisors knowing who to contact when questions arise increased by 6% and there was an 11% increase in knowledge of how to send pertinent information.
Next Steps: The team is adapting the intervention to allow more time for the managers and supervisors to review the resource packet, provide training and update the packet.The team will continue to monitor the results and hold engagement sessions with the managers and supervisors to measure the successes and weaknesses of the effort as they gather additional input.

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