Sierra Wave Media

Eastern Sierra News for May 28, 2024



NIHD23 AllisonPartridge 2

Chief Nursing Officer Allison Partridge

NIHD23 JoyEngblade

Chief Medical Officer Dr. Joy Engblade










Northern Inyo Hospital (NIH) has earned The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval® for Critical Access Hospital Accreditation by demonstrating continuous compliance with its performance standards.   The Gold Seal is a symbol of quality that reflects a healthcare organization’s commitment to providing safe and quality patient care.

Surveyors were onsite for six days of rigorous, unannounced surveys in September. During the visit, Joint Commission surveyors evaluated compliance with critical access hospital standards spanning all aspects of hospital operations, from facilities to patient care to staff training.

“Our patients count on us to continually improve the quality of the care we deliver,” says Chief Medical Officer Dr. Joy Engblade.  “Earning accreditations like this is critical to maintaining our community’s trust in the medical care they receive here. I am incredibly proud of our team and the efforts they made to earn this honor.”

Chief Nursing Officer Allison Partridge agrees. “This validates our team’s hard work and
dedication to providing excellent, high-quality care to our community,” CNO Partridge says.  “Hours of policy review and educational efforts go into preparing for this every day. We could not have earned this recognition without a total team effort. I am proud to see our team recognized for this important work.”

As part of leadership meetings, NIH directors and managers set aside time each month to prepare their teams for the rigors of the survey.  “We strive to be survey-ready at all times”  says RN Quality and Survey-Readiness Manager Alison Feinberg.  “By approaching our work with this mindset, we feel we can best meet the challenges of healthcare head-on, in all areas of the hospital, every day. The results of the survey speak to the hard work all the staff does every day, not just during the survey.”

The Joint Commission developed its standards in consultation with healthcare experts, providers, measurement experts, and patients. Informed by scientific literature and expert consensus, the surveyors help healthcare organizations measure, assess, and improve performance. The surveyors also conducted onsite observations and interviews. “As a private accreditor, The Joint Commission surveys health care organizations to protect the public by identifying deficiencies in care and working with those organizations to correct them as quickly and sustainably as possible” says Mark Pelletier, RN, MS, chief operating officer,

Accreditation and Certification Operations, and chief nursing executive, The Joint Commission.  “We commend Northern Inyo Hospital for its continuous quality improvement efforts in patient safety and quality of care.”

Northern Inyo Hospital has consistently earned the critical access hospital Gold Seal since 1964.  NIH is the only hospital to hold this honor in Inyo and Mono counties. Only 18 of California’s 85 critical access hospitals earned Gold Seal accreditation.

The Joint Commission also lists NIH Laboratory with Gold Seal Approval for its respective lab program, since 2016 to present.  Founded in 1951, The Joint Commission continuously seeks to improve health care for the public, in collaboration with other stakeholders, by evaluating healthcare organizations and inspiring them to excel in providing safe and effective care of the highest quality and value. The Joint Commission evaluates and accredits more than 22,000 healthcare organizations and programs in the United States.

About Northern Inyo Healthcare District: Founded in 1946, Northern Inyo Healthcare District features a 25-bed critical access hospital, a 24-hour emergency department, a primary care rural health clinic, a diagnostic imaging center, and clinics specializing in women’s health, orthopedics, internal medicine, pediatrics and allergies, general surgery, colorectal surgery, breast cancer surgery and urology. Continually striving to improve the health outcomes of those who rely on its services, Northern Inyo Healthcare District aims to improve our communities one life at a time. One team, one goal, your health.

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