OAKBROOK TERRACE, IL--(Marketwire - Aug 30, 2012) - The Joint Commission today announced the appointment of Ronald M. Wyatt, M.D., MHA, as the medical director in the Division of Healthcare Improvement.

In this role, Dr. Wyatt will promote quality improvement and patient safety to internal and external stakeholders, work to influence public policy and legislation to promote improvements in patient safety and serve as the lead information and education resource for patient safety within The Joint Commission. He will also collaborate with the Department of Standards and Survey Methods in the development of National Patient Safety Goals, guide the formulation and issuance of Sentinel Event Alerts, provide the Office of Quality Monitoring staff with medical expertise during the review of sentinel events, and oversee data management and analyses related to the Sentinel Event Database.

Dr. Wyatt brings 20-plus years of clinical experience to The Joint Commission from a wide variety of settings, including the Veterans Administration, the U.S. military, federally funded community health centers in Missouri and Alabama (as medical director), and for-profit and not-for-profit private practice. He previously served as a clinical instructor in the Department of Internal Medicine at the St. Louis University School of Medicine, and as an assistant professor of Internal Medicine and special assistant to the dean for Minority Affairs for the University of Alabama Huntsville Family Practice residency program.

Most recently, Dr. Wyatt served as the director of the Patient Safety Analysis Center in the Department of Defense (DoD), where he was responsible for establishing and maintaining patient safety registries that include clinical, root cause analyses and failure mode and effects analyses data on adverse events at DoD facilities. While at the DoD, he also co-directed the Partnership for Patients initiative and served as chair of the Readmissions Workgroup. As a George W. Merck Fellow with the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI), he received intensive training in performance improvement, measurement, epidemiological and statistical principles.

"Ron brings a wealth of experience in promoting health care quality and patient safety at both the system and organization level," says Ana Pujols McKee, M.D., executive vice president and chief medical officer, The Joint Commission. "This know-how will be important in The Joint Commission's efforts to help accredited health care organizations make improvements in the care they provide."

Dr. Wyatt holds a bachelor's degree in biology from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, and a medical degree and master of science in health administration from the University of Alabama at Birmingham's School of Medicine. He completed his residency at St. Louis University Group Hospitals in St. Louis, Missouri, and is board certified in internal medicine. Dr. Wyatt has also received an honorary doctor of medical sciences degree from the Morehouse School of Medicine in Atlanta, Georgia.

Dr. Wyatt served on the FDA Drug Safety Oversight Board, the Agency for Health Care Research and Quality Science of Public Reporting Special Emphasis Panel, and the Comprehensive Unit Based Safety Program to Prevent Health Care Associated Infections (CUSP) Technical Expert Panel. Dr. Wyatt is a mentor to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Innovation Center Innovation Advisors program.

Founded in 1951, The Joint Commission seeks to continuously improve health care for the public, in collaboration with other stakeholders, by evaluating health care 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 19,000 health care organizations and programs in the United States, including more than 10,300 hospitals and home care organizations, and more than 6,500 other health care organizations that provide long term care, behavioral health care, laboratory and ambulatory care services. The Joint Commission currently certifies more than 2,000 disease-specific care programs, focused on the care of patients with chronic illnesses such as stroke, joint replacement, stroke rehabilitation, heart failure and many others. The Joint Commission also provides health care staffing services certification for more than 750 staffing offices. An independent, not-for-profit organization, The Joint Commission is the nation's oldest and largest standards-setting and accrediting body in health care. Learn more about The Joint Commission at www.jointcommission.org.

View the multi-media news release: http://www.pwrnewmedia.com/2012/joint_commission/wyatt_appointment/

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