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Awards and Accreditations

BMC Endoscopy Unit Achieves National Certification
April 29, 2009

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

BERKSHIRE MEDICAL CENTER ENDOSCOPY UNIT RECOGNIZED BY LEADING GASTROINTESTINAL MEDICAL SOCIETY FOR QUALITY AND SAFETY

PITTSFIELD, MA - The American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE), a leading gastrointestinal medical society, has recognized the Endoscopy Unit at Berkshire Medical Center as part of its new program specifically dedicated to promoting quality in endoscopy, in all settings where it is practiced in the United States. The BMC Endoscopy Unit is one of 124 endoscopy units nationally to be granted the recognition in 2009. The ASGE Endoscopy Unit Recognition Program honors endoscopy units that follow the ASGE guidelines on privileging, quality assurance, endoscopy reprocessing and CDC infection control guidelines and have completed specialized training on principles in quality and safety in endoscopy.

“We are honored to be recognized by ASGE for our efforts to enhance quality and safety in our endoscopy unit,” said Ira Schmelkin, MD, Division Chief of Gastroenterology for BMC. “The program course on improving quality and safety provided us with valuable knowledge to continue to give our patients the safest care, and our staff at the BMC Endoscopy Unit is committed to providing the best care possible.”

Upon completion of the program, units, like BMC’s, receive an ASGE "Certificate of Recognition" for promoting quality in endoscopy.

“ASGE continues to receive an outstanding response to this program, and we are delighted to have recognized recipients from 124 endoscopy units, who are working hard every day to provide high-quality care to their patients in a safe environment,” said Douglas O. Faigel, MD, FASGE, chairman, ASGE Quality Assurance Task Force. “We are proud to acknowledge these ASGE members through our Endoscopy Unit Recognition Program for their commitment to promoting the highest standards of safety and quality.”

About the Program
To successfully complete the program and receive a Certificate of Recognition, a center must show proof of successful and current accreditation by a recognized accrediting body (AAAHC, Joint Commission); sign an attestation affirming that certain ASGE and CDC guidelines are adopted as minimum requirements of the unit policy; and have a representative of the unit complete the ASGE Recognition Course, “Improving Quality and Safety In Your Endoscopy Unit.” The Certificate of Recognition award is granted for a three-year renewable period.

The program is applicable to all settings in the United States where endoscopy is practiced, including office-based endoscopy units, hospital-based endoscopy units, and stand-alone ambulatory endoscopy or surgery centers.

An important component of the program is an educational course that thoroughly reviews related guidelines. Honorees attended either the “Improving Quality and Safety in Your Endoscopy Unit” course held in Oak Brook, Ill., in October 2008, or the course held in Las Vegas, Nev., February 2009.

ASGE and Quality
ASGE is the profession’s leader in setting standards of excellence in endoscopy through its safety guidelines and the training of its members so that patients receive the best and safest care possible. The Society constantly reinforces the importance of quality among its members through member communications, such as emails and newsletters, and its CME courses, including "Improving Quality and Safety in Your Endoscopy Unit.”



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