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Perfecting Patient Care

Through the Pittsburgh Regional Health Initiative (PRHI), a supporting organization, the Jewish Healthcare Foundation helps clinical partners measurably improve patient outcomes by using proven quality engineering principles adapted for healthcare from the Toyota Production System. PRHI's Perfecting Patient CareSM (PPC) curriculum was a national forerunner in the movement to bring engineering disciplines to bear on clinical practice. PRHI staff members teach the curriculum to doctors, nurses, healthcare administrators and other healthcare professionals in an intensive, four-day program known as "PPC University." The university has given the region standing as an intellectual center of the healthcare quality engineering movement and has turned the PPC toolkit for improving health care into a Pittsburgh export.

Perfecting Patient CareSM, or PPC, is a quality engineering methodology that calls for patient need to drive patient care in the same way that customer need drives commerce. Through PPC:

  • The work of health care is designed, organized and managed according to what is best for the patient, rather than the needs of hospitals, clinicians, insurers or providers.
  • Errors and poor outcomes are viewed as opportunities for learning and improvement, not blame and punishment.
  • Faulty systems are understood to be the source of errors and poor outcomes, not faulty people. Care processes are systematically tracked to discover any impediments to the best possible patient outcomes.
  • Clinical professionals form teams, working collaboratively to use their skills and knowledge for experimentation and improvement in care processes.
  • Direct observation, data collection, real-time problem solving and rapid experimentation are conducted at the point of care.


Teachable Moments

In order to connect you directly with the daily work of clinical champions, we’ve created a series of Teachable Moments which highlight breakthroughs happening at the front line.


PPC System  Description
Perfecting Patient CareSM & (PPC) University An intensive four-day program teaches principles and application of the PPC methodology; an adaptation of the Toyota Production System for use in health care. PPC encourages small improvements that are designed, quickly tested and modified as necessary by frontline workers. Supervisors are partners or teachers in this process and rapid-cycle problem solving and learning are results.
On-Site PPC Coaching On-site coaching helps practitioners at each site develop their new skills on the job. The system supports leaders to competency and beyond until practitioners become experts capable of teaching and supporting others.
PPC Modules Patient-care modules for frontline staff (low and high skilled) and managers in long–term and acute–care settings. Topics include communication, conflict management, working within teams, team building/development, basic problem solving, rapid–cycle problem solving, and delegating for success.

Pittsburgh Regional Health Initiative

The Pittsburgh Regional Health Initiative (PRHI) is a not-for-profit supporting organization of the Jewish Healthcare Foundation. Founded in 1997 as a consortium of Pittsburgh-area medical, business and civic leaders, PRHI's vision is to transform the region's healthcare system by supporting excellence at the point of care – where best practices determine quality and efficiencies determine cost. It sets zero as the goal for medical errors and no deviations from best practice and aspires to develop the methods for achieving those goals with committed institutional partners and individual practitioners who champion evidence–based care. PRHI aims to help the Pittsburgh region and the State of Pennsylvania become recognized leaders in perfecting patient safety and treatment and to widely disseminate the learning from projects that lead to that accomplishment.

PRHI's mission is to give champions in health care the tools, expertise, education, models and networks they need to perfect patient care and safety in their organizations. PRHI disseminates what it learns as a means of leveraging transformations in the region's healthcare system and in systems beyond the region. PRHI measures its success by the transformations it helps effect and by the quantifiable impact those transformations have on patient outcomes and cost, counting only those projects that are sustainable and replicable.

Pittsburgh Regional Health Initiative Website