November 6, 2020By Lindsey Nolen

ISQua’s Healthcare Virtual Conference Explores “Leading for Quality”: Nov. 25th

Each year, the International Society for Quality in Health Care (ISQua) hosts a much anticipated annual international simulation conference. Due to COVID-19, this year’s gathering of simulationists has been shifted to a virtual conference, titled “Leading for Quality,” that will be held Wednesday, Nov. 25, at 11:30 a.m. GMT with a suggested registration fee of €50. ISQua explained that during this time of COVID19, leadership in healthcare needs to reflect on what is required to ensure that the quality of care is enhanced. In this medical simulation conference, ISQua members and speakers will examine what is needed to lead for quality and patient safety when there are so many other challenges.

“Effective Leadership is important in any organization at any time but specifically 2020 has shown why leadership in healthcare is particularly important. With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic it has come to the fore that leadership in healthcare has a huge impact on the response of countries and institutions to the virus and on the quality of the care patients in those countries and institutions experience,” ISQua Events Officer Eleanor Keegan said. “It is now more important than ever that we are people focused and remember that the people who deliver care and those who receive care want care to be of the highest quality at all times.”

At this year’s event, renowned leaders in the field of medical simulation will be speaking on a variety of topics related to the event’s theme. Speakers will include Jeffrey Braithwaite, ISQua president; Dr. Edward Kelley, director of the Department of Integrated Health Services in the UHC & Life Course Division at the World Health Organization Headquarters in Geneva; and many more.


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The entirety of the virtual simulation conference is expected to take three hours and consists of three independent sessions run entirely through Zoom. First, there will be four Pecha Kucha presentations, followed by networking opportunities done through breakout rooms. Each delegate will be allocated to a room of no more than nine participants.

ISQua will keep the rooms small to ensure proper networking opportunities. The session lasts for 45 minutes, as feedback from the last virtual conference stated that 30 minutes was not long enough. The participants in each room can discuss the mornings programme content or anything they like, just as they would at an in-person conference.

Lastly, there will be four plenary-style talks given by Maureen Flynn, of the Irish Department of Health; Wafa Allouche, of ISQua Emerging Leaders; and Anna Edwards and Isabela Castro, both ISQua honorary advisers on person-centered care. The speakers were selected through a few different methods. Some are presenting under the topic of Leading for Quality at the Florence conference in 2021, and some are new on the ISQua Board and the organization wanted to give them a voice. Others were nominated by the ISQua planning committee for their excellent expertise, experience, and reputation.

ISQua has held two other virtual conferences in early September on the topic of patient safety. The organization had never held virtual conferences before the coronavirus pandemic, and these virtual conferences are meant to act as teasers of what can be expected at ISQua’s in-person event in Florence, from July 8 to July 11 2021. These events are designed for healthcare simulation professionals, patients, caregivers, patient advocates, frontline workers, clinicians, senior management and more.


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ISQua Virtual Simulation Conference Program Details

After the opening address and welcome from Conference Chair Tricia Woodhead, the first keynote presentation featuring Braithwaite will begin. He will discuss a key issue facing leaders running healthcare systems in every country: coping with the course of the pandemic and ensuring the quality of care across the board. Braithwaite will explain how leaders can deal with conflicting goals in circumstances when the stakes are high.

Next, Flynn will share insight on “grounded accountability” from the front line. The research for discussion examines practitioner insights into accountability for clinical governance in healthcare settings. The analysis draws on the distinction in the prior literature between formal “imposed accountability” and front-line “felt accountability,” as well as the idea of “on-the-ground management.”

“At this time of COVID-19, we need to reflect on what is required to ensure that the quality of care is enhanced. In this conference, we will examine what it will take to lead for quality when there are so many other challenges,” ISQua CEO Dr. Peter Lachman said. “It is now more important than ever that we are people-focused and remember that the people who deliver care and those who receive care want care to be of the highest quality at all times.”

Allouche will then explain her journey as an ISQua emerging leader. Each year, one applicant, who is deemed capable of transferring knowledge, ideas and skills to influencing groups from their country, is chosen by the ISQua Committee as the emerging leader. Allouche was awarded this honor in 2018 and plans to share her experience and the lessons she learned.

Following her presentation, Edwards will touch on patient-centered care and why this form of care is especially important to her. Then Castro will present reasons why healthcare simulation professionals should consider co-creating with patients. A Q&A session will follow these presentations, giving participants an opportunity to inquire about the information discussed.

Through these discussion topics, speaker presentations and additional resources, ISQua hopes to inspire, promote and support continuous improvement in the quality and safety of healthcare. Tickets for this ISQua virtual conference are available for purchase on the ISQua website.

About the ISQua Healthcare Simulation Community

Established in 1985, the International Society for Quality in Health Care (ISQua) is a membership-based not-for-profit community. The organization’s mission is “to inspire and drive improvement in health, and the safety and quality of healthcare worldwide.” ISQua provides an integrated program for members in every WHO region, including over 80 countries.

While much has been achieved across the clinical simulation industry during the last 30 years of operation, ISQua believes there is still more to be done. The organization explains that adapting and continuing the ISQua vision for the future will always require new visionaries to carry things forward.

Each year, ISQua gives out a number of awards to healthcare professionals promoting quality in care. The organization’s Life Membership Award is presented to individuals for exceptional service to ISQua and their achievements in the field of quality improvement. The Distinguished Services Award is given to individuals for their contribution to the achievement of ISQua’s mission. Additionally, the Reizenstein Award recognizes the author of the best paper submitted to the International Journal for Quality in Health Care annually.

Visit the ISQua Virtual Conference Website to Learn More!


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