Statement from IHI: Update on Coronavirus (COVID-19)

March 17, 2020

The Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) continues to closely monitor the international, national, regional, and local impact of Coronavirus (COVID-19). Our top priority is the safety and well-being of our staff and the global health and health care community we serve, which includes health care professionals, students, patients, and caregivers.

As more and more towns, cities, states, and countries recommend and enact restrictions on social contact and travel, nearly every aspect of normal life has been upended. IHI is following the advice and requests from local leaders and medical experts and has temporarily vacated our Boston office. We are fortunate that most of our staff are able to effectively work from home, but know that this is not the case for everyone.

We recognize that our friends and colleagues in the health professions are deeply affected by the current pandemic. We have been hearing directly from our partners about the unique pressures, shortages, and impacts this crisis is generating daily. We are also hearing inspiring accounts of courage and heroism from health systems as they work tirelessly to treat the sick, protect their staff and communities, and help stem the tide of this outbreak.

IHI is working hard to determine how we can best help everyone in the global health and health care community. We will leverage all our resources and networks to support health systems and communities during these difficult times. We have been working with our colleagues in the IHI Leadership Alliance to exchange ideas, innovations, and experience in tackling the virus as it spreads. We are working with other partners to create a platform for wider collaboration. Today, on our social media platforms, we will kick off a COVID-19 "Question of the Day" that will crowd-source potential solutions and responses to some of the immediate challenges being faced by our partners and friends from around the world. We are also putting our innovation process to work on emerging care models such as safe telemedicine.

Please let us know if there is something you need from IHI at this time. As I said above, we are acutely aware of the pressures you are facing. We know we need to be responsive to your needs in a way that is helpful to the core work you need to do right now.

In addition, IHI wants to add our voice to the call to help slow the progression of COVID-19 and mitigate its impact by following the recommendations of medical and public health experts and other public officials.

We are actively reviewing all our upcoming programs and communicating with enrolled participants as plans shift. We plan to continuously update this page on IHI.org with the latest program changes.

IHI is so grateful to safety and quality improvers everywhere who are using their knowledge and skills to reduce common infections as well as infectious outbreaks. We take comfort knowing that individuals and organizations are deploying best practices to prevent and reduce the spread of COVID-19 and save lives.

We thank you for all you do to improve health and health care worldwide.   

In good health,

Derek Feeley

 


Derek Feeley
President and CEO
Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI)


 


March 6, 2020

​The Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) considers it a top priority to ensure the safety and well-being of the global health and health care community, including our event attendees, faculty, and staff. The IHI community consists of health care professionals, students, patients, and caregivers across the globe, and we know many lives are being impacted and disrupted by the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

Like many of you, IHI is monitoring closely the reports and recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO). We are relying on their scientifically grounded expertise — in combination with other reliable sources — to inform our own decisions about minimizing the exposure to COVID-19 among our staff and everyone who takes part in our events. We are practicing caution and preparedness in these ways:

  • Following the guidance of the CDC and WHO for recommendations around travel for our staff.
  • Encouraging IHI staff to review and follow the recommendations of the CDC for everyday precautions that help reduce the spread of diseases.
  • Asking IHI employees, event attendees, and members of the IHI community to stay home if they are feeling unwell and/or have a fever, cough, and/or shortness of breath.
  • Asking that IHI employees who have recently traveled abroad to any of the areas currently listed by the CDC as level 2 or level 3 areas to self-quarantine for 14 days, contact a medical professional, and follow the medical professional’s instructions.
  • Asking event attendees and members of the IHI community who have recently traveled abroad to any of the areas currently listed by the CDC as level 2 or level 3 areas to stay at home. We also encourage them to self-quarantine for 14 days, contact a medical professional, and follow the medical professional’s instructions.
  • Taking additional environmental cleaning precautions in our office and at events.
  • Monitoring guidance, instructions, and orders from local, state, and federal authorities about COVID-19 in locations where we have upcoming meetings. Should a recommendation, instruction, or order be issued to limit public gatherings we will postpone or cancel meetings accordingly. As of March 6, most IHI events are continuing as scheduled, but this is subject to change. We will reach out to anyone impacted by a program change directly and will keep our website updated with this information.

In case it would be helpful, we also want to offer the IHI Patient Safety Essentials Toolkit, a downloadable resource of nine powerful methods that hospital and health system quality professionals may use to help improve patient safety.

IHI salutes safety and quality improvers everywhere who are using their knowledge and skills to reduce common infections as well as infectious outbreaks. We are confident that individuals and organizations are deploying best practices to prevent and reduce the spread of COVID-19 and save lives.

We will keep you informed of any changes to our approach as more information becomes available, and will also post updates to our website. We thank you for all you do to improve health and health care worldwide.

In good health,

Derek Feeley

 


Derek Feeley
President and CEO
Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI)