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Honoring

Innovation and Excellence

Gage Awards


Through the Gage Awards, the association recognizes members for implementing successful improvement projects; spreads best practices and innovative programs to other organizations; and supports our research, policy, and advocacy work by sharing stories of members’ success with external audiences.

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2022

Categories

Population Health

Gage Awards for population health recognize successful programs that aim to improve health outcomes for a defined population or community by addressing social and economic factors that influence health. 

Population health programs are not all alike, but key features may include: 

  • working outside the walls of the hospital to care for or improve the health of individuals in a specified geographic area (e.g., county or city);  
  • a focus on promoting equitable health outcomes for marginalized populations;  
  • using community-based resources to support population health;  
  • mitigating social and economic barriers to good health (e.g., housing instability, food insecurity, utility needs, interpersonal violence, and lack of transportation)  
  • creating a learning organization capable of rapid deployment of best practices; and  
  • forming partnerships in the community to improve population health. 

Highly competitive programs will be innovative; engage the community and patients from design to completion; and partner with community-based organizations to reduce health disparities, improve health equity, or combat structural racism in marginalized populations. 


  • Judging Criteria
Judging Criteria
  • The project is innovative, featuring new or original methods, implementation, or delivery. 
  • The project was well-defined.  
  • A rigorous needs assessment and program evaluation were used. 
  • The program addressed the upstream factors or social determinants of health. 
  • The program was accessible to geographically based individuals, not just patients already attributed to the health care system. 
  • The program seeks to reduce health disparities, improve health equity, or combat structural racism in marginalized populations. 
  • Patients, families, and the community were engaged in the design, planning, or development of the program. 
  • The program effectively used community-based resources and partnered with other community organizations. 
  • At least one year of data was reported. 
  • The results and baseline data demonstrate improved health outcomes. 

Quality

Gage Awards for quality recognize activities that improve the quality of care delivered, improve patient experience, engage patients and their families, reduce staff burnout, or reduce or eliminate harmful events affecting individual patients or groups of patients.   

Improvement programs may include the use of evidence-based interventions, standardized practices, bundles of care, and checklists. Highly competitive programs will be innovative, show leadership commitment, and engage the community and patients from design to completion to reduce health disparities, improve health equity, or combat structural racism in marginalized populations. 


  • Judging Criteria
Judging Criteria
  • The project is innovative, featuring new or original methods, implementation, or delivery. 
  • The project was well-defined.  
  • A form of evaluation was used.  
  • Leadership was engaged in the project. 
  • Front-line staff was involved in the project.  
  • Patients or families were engaged in the design, planning, or development of the program. 
  • At least one year of data was reported. 
  • The project results demonstrate improved outcomes. 
  • The project’s outcomes promoted health equity, reduced health disparities, or combated structural racism in marginalized populations. 

COVID-19 Innovations (Temporary Category)

Gage Awards in the COVID-19 innovations category highlight innovative practices, projects, and programs to address the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic. This temporary category captures creative solutions hospitals implemented to address the current or potential future pandemics within the hospital or in their community.  

COVID-19 innovations are not all alike, but may include data and population surveillance, testing, communications, therapeutics, vaccine development, clinical trials or research, disparities reduction, community outreach, workforce programs, mental health programs, telehealth, empowering residents, resilience planning, addressing burnout, combatting structural racism, or supply chain modifications. This is not an exhaustive list.  

Well-qualified programs will feature new or original methods, engage the community and patients from design to completion, and promote health, reduce health disparities, or combat structural racism with a COVID-19 lens.  

A winner and an honorable mention will not be selected from this category. Rather, three submissions will receive recognition for their innovations. 


  • Judging Criteria
Judging Criteria
  • The project is innovative, featuring new or original methods, implementation, or delivery. 
  • The project was well-defined.  
  • A form of evaluation was used.  
  • Patients, families, or the community were engaged and involved in the project including, but not limited to, sharing information.  
  • The project uniquely addresses barriers and supports their hospital or community during the coronavirus pandemic.  
  • The project made progress toward improved outcomes.  
  • The project’s outcomes promoted health equity, reduced health disparities, or combated structural racism in marginalized populations. 

Recognition

America’s Essential Hospitals will formally honor Gage Award recipients at a luncheon on Tursday, June 23, during VITAL2022, the association’s annual conference. The association will create and play two-minute videos showcasing each population health and quality winning project and highlight COVID-19 innovative projects during the luncheon.  

The association website and publications will highlight Gage Award recipients. Recipients often are called on to describe their work in other visible venues, such as on a webinar hosted by America’s Essential Hospitals or on essentialcommunities.org, created by Essential Hospitals Institute. 

Each category winner will receive a Gage Awards plaque, and all project team members will receive a certificate. Winners also will receive one complimentary registration to VITAL2022 and a $1,000 stipend to assist with travel arrangements.  

Honorable mentions and all recognized COVID-19 innovations will receive one complimentary registration to VITAL2022 and a Gage Awards plaque, and all project team members will receive a certificate. 


2021

Gage Awards

Category

Population Health

Winner
Memorial Healthcare System
Mothers Overcoming Maternal Stress (MOMS)

Harris Health System
FoodRx: A Cross-Sector Approach to Improving
Health and Health Equity

Category

Quality

Winner
Hennepin Healthcare
Reducing 30-Day Readmissions in a Population Experiencing Homlessness

Honorable Mention
NYC Health + Hospitals
The High Value Care Initiative

Honorable Mention
Truman Medical Centers | University Health
Conexiones: Cultural Health Navigation



COVID-19

Innovations

In addition to the winners and honorable mention projects, we identify programs that
raise the bar for innovative responses to the many challenges of COVID-19.

READ MORE

Parkland Health & Hospital System
Parkland Health & Hospital System used analytical tools to monitor and respond to confirmed cases of COVID-19, and to target testing and vaccinations to underserved people in Dallas County, Texas. By late December 2020, Parkland had identified more than 34,500 positive COVID-19 cases and flagged more than 10,000 patients as high-risk to initiate outreach and care.

New York City Health and Hospitals
New York City Health and Hospitals responded to a shortage of palliative care employees by recruiting more than 400 tele-palliative medicine volunteers through a nationwide social media campaign. Of those, 64 physicians, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants completed expedited credentialing and assisted with remote care consultations at five of the health system’s acute-care hospitals.

LAC+USC Medical Center
LAC+USC Medical Center, in Los Angeles, optimized patient outcomes and preserved critical acute-care access during the pandemic by designing and deploying its SAFE @ Home O2 program. The initiative enabled patients requiring low levels of oxygen support to be managed at home. Over the past year, LAC+USC Medical Center discharged on home oxygen more than 1,600 patients with COVID-19.

University Medical Center of El Paso
University Medical Center of El Paso piloted a program to allow adult family members to visit hospitalized patients once a week for two hours. Visitors were required to use hospital-provided personal protective equipment and a powered air-purifying respirator, at a cost of $250 each—the hospital’s only expense related to the program. The program has enhanced patients’ feeling of safety, and initial results point toward improved recovery rates for critically ill COVID-19 patients.

Grady Health System
Grady Health System, in Atlanta, organized student volunteers in an outreach call program to screen patients for COVID-19. The system used artificial intelligence to identify patients at highest risk of poor outcomes if they were to contract the coronavirus. To date, the students have made more than 4,600 patient calls, identifying in half the calls answered at least one health care need that required action and 20 percent with social needs.

UMASS Memorial Medical Center
UMASS Memorial Medical Center, in Worcester, Massachusetts, reduced the spread of COVID-19, minimized preventable deaths, and lowered use of its emergency department and ICU, with a multipronged, community-based campaign to target high-risk neighborhoods. The program deployed mobile care staff to answer questions in multiple languages, distribute PPE, and spearhead testing.

Boston Medical Center
To counter a drop in pediatric visits to the hospital as COVID-19 surged, Boston Medical Center launched the BMC Pediatrics Mobile Outreach Program. The program conducts home visits to provide vaccinations, mental health care, child care support, domestic violence assistance, and neonatal care. It also addresses patients’ unmet social needs, such as food insecurity. The program reaches more than 200 families each week.

San Joaquin General Hospital
San Joaquin General Hospital collaborated with county clinics to quickly transition to a community-based model of pop-up testing sites in areas with large numbers of people experiencing homelessness and migrant and seasonal agricultural workers. The initiative has conducted thousands of COVID-19 tests, including in areas with transportation barriers to testing, and prevented potential outbreaks among these at-risk populations.

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