FAH Hospital Policy Blog

Perspectives on health policy affecting America's hospitals and the patients we serve.

FAH Policy Blog Team

New Hospitals in Focus Episode: The Joint Commission’s Future

What is the Joint Commission? How does it function as an integral part of our health care system? In this episode of Hospitals in Focus, Chip sits down with the new President and Chief Executive Office of the Joint Commission – Dr. Jonathan Perlin – to break down the organization’s 70-year history of evaluating and accrediting the quality of health care providers, as well as Dr. Perlin’s vision and priorities for the organization’s future. 
Dr. Perlin stepped into his role at the Joint Commission in March 2021 and hit the ground running, setting aspirational goals for the organization to lead the future of quality and evaluation.  
One of these goals is advancing equity. Dr Perlin explains how the Joint Commission’s role in evaluation and accreditation can help reach this objective. 
“Accreditations are the fundamental requirement for advancing health care equity. There is more to come of that in the upcoming year. We’re interested in aligning organizations to really tackle some of these challenges that get in the way of what our vision offers: all people always experiencing the highest quality and safest health care… COVID so disrupted things outside of a hospital’s control, like access to prenatal care, and care for continuing conditions, that at the very top of my agenda is doing everything we can to use the, the joint commission as a mechanism to support improvements in health equity. 
Dr. Perlin also discussed the effect the pandemic has had on the growing workforce shortage and the role the Joint Commission plays in finding solutions – from the safety and well-being of current staff to the effects on patient care.   
“There are three dimensions where the Joint Commission can contribute: advocacy, improvement, and assurance,” explained Dr. Perlin.  
“There are no easy answers. I believe the answers will be found in two areas. One, new models for care. Two, how do we think about rigid roles like staffing ratios and how do we put together the ideal team and match that team to the needs of a patient? How do we better support nurses with advanced resource nurses? How do we bring the medical and the nursing teams together more closely to guide therapy, what are other support services that can give time back to nurses so they can do the most professional work of their license? … In other words, how do we actually bring together certain aspects of technology to create better human resources for care? 
You can listen to the complete podcast here