Comprehensive cancer center among first in nation to be recertified.
The UC Irvine Health Division of Hematology/Oncology is among the nation’s first practices to be recertified by American Society of Clinical Oncology for high-quality patient care. The ASCO Quality Oncology Practice Initiative assures patients and their families that an oncology practice meets rigorous standards for high-quality cancer care.
“We are incredibly proud to have attained this recertification,” said Dr. Edward L. Nelson, chief of the division of hematology/oncology and associate professor, department of medicine in the UC Irvine School of Medicine and in the department of molecular biology & biochemistry, UC Irvine School of Biological Sciences.
“Since we were among the first class of QOPI-certified practices in 2010, we have maintained a very real and substantive commitment to providing our patients the highest quality of care, setting the standard for cancer treatment in our community, and in the education of future clinicians in the highest standards of practice. This re-certification is a concrete measure of that longstanding commitment to quality and excellence.”
UC Irvine’s hematologists-oncologists treat patients at the UC Irvine Medical Center and are members of the National Cancer Institute-designated Chao Family Comprehensive Cancer Center, one of only 41 NCI-designated comprehensive cancer centers in the nation and the only one in Orange County. It is the county’s only cancer center whose missions include advancing scientific research and clinical trials in all phases that lead to potentially life-saving drugs and treatments. All five UC medical centers have NCI-designated comprehensive cancer centers.
The Quality Oncology Practice Initiative is a voluntary self-assessment and improvement program developed by ASCO to help hematology and oncology practices gauge the caliber of care they provide. Encompassing at least 80 quality measures, it lets practices compare their performance data to that of others across the country and identify areas for improvement. It is a three-year certification. The QOPI Certification Program was launched in January 2010. For the past three years the UC Irvine Health Hematology/Oncology practice has met or exceeded over 90 percent of the more than 80 measures surveyed.
“The certification reinforces that physicians at an academic medical center can meet the highest standards for delivery of quality cancer care while providing disease specific expertise and complements our strengths in laboratory research and clinical trials that have always been hallmarks of our program and which embody our three missions: discover, teach, heal,” Nelson said.
UC Irvine Health first achieved QOPI certification in July 2010. It was the first practice in California, the first at an academic medical center and the first practice in the U.S. directly affiliated with a NCI-designated comprehensive cancer center to obtain QOPI certification. Since then, more than 200 practices have been certified in the first program of its kind for oncology in the United States, including such notable institutions as Stanford, UC San Diego and M.D. Anderson, each in2013. UCI’s recertification places it among the first class of hematology-oncology practices to do so.