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DPH hospital licensure survey is coming up

"Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water..." became one of the most famous taglines in film history when it was used to promote Steven Speilberg's Jaws 2 sequel in 1978. The phrase is still used 40 years later.

Such is the case at Yale New Haven Hospital, with an impending licensure survey visit expected from the state Department of Public Health (DPH) in the next few months. YNHH's license from the DPH needs to be renewed before Sept. 30. Historically the DPH surveyors have visited YNHH in the spring or early summer.

And, while YNHH underwent a successful accreditation survey by The Joint Commission at the end of January, the hospital's department of Accreditation, Safety and Regulatory Affairs (ASRA) has important advice for employees and physicians.

"Overall, we should be in good shape, having just completed our Joint Commission Accreditation (TJC) survey, but we need to keep up the rigor around our everyday safety and quality practices," said Victoria Dahl Vickers, executive director of ASRA at YNHH.

In Connecticut, the Department of Public Health licenses the state's 29 acute-care hospitals every two years. DPH also inspects hospitals when the department receives a complaint against a facility or is following up to ensure compliance with a corrective action plan. Hospitals must comply with DPH regulations regarding physical plant, maintenance, medical staff, safety, equipment, medical records, emergency planning, service provision and infection control, among other things – both in the hospital's main campuses and at all ambulatory sites.

Surveyors are usually on site a week or longer, depending on whether the licensure survey is combined with investigations related to adverse events or complaints. As with the January Joint Commission survey, YNHH will set up command centers on both campuses (in Tompkins and Selina Lewis) for communications and coordination of surveyors.

To review fact sheets with Accreditation, Safety and Regulatory Affairs reminders before the DPH visit, go to this page on the YNHH intranet.