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ACP Practice Advisor adds module to help labs deliver quality and value-driven lab medicine

E-module helps laboratories operate in accordance with patient-centered medical home standards

PHILADELPHIA, September 5, 2013 -- The American College of Physicians (ACP) has added a new module to ACP Practice Advisor based on COLA’s PCLE (Patient-Centered Laboratory Excellence) Excellerator. The module is designed to help Physician Office Laboratories (POLs) deliver quality and value-driven lab medicine to their patients every day.

ACP Practice Advisor is an online tool designed to help practices improve patient care, organization, and workflow. ACP is making the PCLE program available to Practice Advisor subscribers as part of an agreement with COLA, a leading laboratory accreditor. ACP practices that enroll in the COLA PCLE recognition program will be entitled to discounted COLA fees.

The PCLExcellerator program enables POL directors and personnel to assess their operations to determine if they are operating in accordance with emerging new healthcare delivery models such as the patient-centered medical home (PCMH) and accountable care organizations (ACO). It also provides a wide range of resources that emphasize continuous good laboratory practices above and beyond current regulatory requirements for clinical laboratories performing Provider Performed Microscopy (PPM), waived, moderate and high complexity testing, including:

  • Emerging PCMH standards for laboratories, such as the importance of accurate lab testing as data is increasingly shared via electronic medical records systems
  • Case studies illustrating how labs averted potential problems by improving quality standards
  • An online library, including links to CMS educational resources as well as a wide variety of online COLA courses and products designed to promote quality practices

“The quality and safety of in-office laboratory testing is a key priority for ACP since many clinical decisions are based on the results,” said Michael S. Barr, MD, MBA, FACP, who leads ACP’s Division of Medical Practice. “COLA’s PCLExcellerator, coupled with ACP’s Medical Laboratory Evaluation proficiency testing program, will help practices maintain confidence in the quality of their laboratory services and provide patient-centered care.”

“We are very pleased to welcome the American College of Physicians’ support in the PCLExcellerator process,” said COLA Chief Executive Officer Douglas Beigel. “It can help laboratories instill a culture of excellence in their delivery of lab medicine, so that practitioners using their services can be assured of consistently high quality results, generated by well-trained staff.”

Approximately 2,000 practices nationwide have successfully used ACP Practice Advisor since it was introduced in 2009. Providing practice teams with a robust self-assessment tool to improve patient care, streamline fundamental business operations, and identify and implement key features of the patient-centered medical home (PCMH), users are part of an online community of practices committed to improving patient care and identifying office efficiencies.

ACP Practice Advisor offers 28 self-paced modules that address the key attributes and expectations of a PCMH, improving clinical care, and practice management. Each module includes:

  • Background information: an explanation of key principles, research, and important concepts.
  • Practice Biopsy: a self-assessment to help practices identify opportunities for improvement or validate efforts already underway.
  • Case Study: “How It Works in Practice” describes the efforts of a practice as it works through the findings generated through each module.
  • Resource Library: relevant references, guides, and sample policies in a variety of formats. The resources from each module are combined into a master Resource Library that includes more than 800 sources of information.
  • Reporting Functions: a feature to help track progress over-time, identify opportunities for improvement, and compare practices.

About the American College of Physicians
The American College of Physicians is the largest medical specialty organization and the second-largest physician group in the United States. ACP members include 137,000 internal medicine physicians (internists), related subspecialists, and medical students. Internal medicine physicians are specialists who apply scientific knowledge and clinical expertise to the diagnosis, treatment, and compassionate care of adults across the spectrum from health to complex illness. Follow ACP on Twitter and Facebook.

About COLA
COLA accredits nearly 8,000 medical laboratories and provides the clinical laboratory with a program of education, consultation, and accreditation. The organization is an independent, non-profit accreditor whose education program and standards enable clinical laboratories and staff to meet U.S. CLIA and other regulatory requirements. COLA’s program is endorsed by the American Medical Association (AMA), the American Academy of Family Practitioners (AAFP), the American College of Physicians (ACP), and is recognized by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (TJC). For more information about COLA accreditation services and educational products, and online educational opportunities, please call 800-981-9883 or visit COLA's web site at www.cola.org or www.colainsider.org.

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