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UPMC CancerCenter Recognized for Quality Cancer Care from Largest Oncology Society in United States

PITTSBURGH, May 16, 2012 – UPMC CancerCenter, partner with the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute (UPCI), has been recognized for its high quality by the Quality Oncology Practice Initiative  Certification Program (QOPI), an affiliate of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO). The QOPI® Certification program provides a three-year certification for outpatient hematology-oncology practices that meet the highest standards for cancer care. UPMC CancerCenter is the largest cancer center in the country to obtain this distinction, and the only certified practice in southwestern Pennsylvania.

“We chose to apply for QOPI certification because the assessment of 88 different quality measures demonstrates to us as well as our patients and their families that we are providing the highest quality cancer care at all of our sites throughout the UPMC CancerCenter network,” said Peter Ellis, M.D., director of the medical oncology network for UPMC CancerCenter.

“Cancer patients and their families should expect nothing less than accountability and the highest standards of care from their cancer care providers,” said Allen S. Lichter, M.D., chief executive officer of ASCO and president of the QOPI Certification Program. “QOPI participation reflects a commitment to quality of care that leads to fundamental changes in the clinical practice of oncology. Oncology practices that commit to quality and safety are those that provide optimal cancer care. The certification program helps practices determine whether they are providing the best treatment and care possible to their patients, and demonstrates a commitment to excellence and ongoing quality improvement in the hematology-oncology outpatient practice.”

QOPI is a voluntary, self-assessment and improvement program launched by ASCO in 2006 to help hematology-oncology and medical oncology practices assess the quality of the care they provide. Through the program, practices abstract data from patients’ records up to twice a year and enter this information into a secure database. The QOPI Certification Program analyzes individual practice data and compares these to more than 100 evidence-based and consensus quality measures. The information then is provided in reports to participating practices. Individual practices also are able to compare their performance to data from other practices across the country. Based on this feedback, doctors and practices can identify areas for improvement.

To become certified, practices have to submit to an evaluation of their entire practice and documentation standards. The QOPI staff and steering group members then verify that the evaluation and documents are correct and that the practices met core standards in all areas of treatment, including treatment planning, staff training and education, chemotherapy orders and drug preparation, patient consent and education, safe chemotherapy administration and monitoring and assessment of patient well-being.

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