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Certifications

Board certification is the patient’s assurance that physicians and our entire group are up to date in their medical specialties and are capable of providing the very best care and experience possible. 

What is Board Certification?

Board certification demonstrates a physician’s knowledge, experience and skills to provide quality healthcare within a given specialty of medical practice. 

Medical specialty certification in the United States is a voluntary process. While medical licensure sets the minimum competency requirements to diagnose and treat patients, it is not specialty-specific. Board certification, however, demonstrates a physician’s exceptional expertise in a particular specialty and/or subspecialty of medical practice.

Board certification signals a physician’s commitment to consistently achieve superior clinical outcomes in a responsive, patient-focused setting. Patients, physicians, healthcare providers, insurers and quality organizations look for board certification as the best measure of a physician’s knowledge, experience and skills to provide quality healthcare within a given specialty.

About the Certification Process

The American Board of Urology (ABU) has been encouraging study, improving standards and promoting competency in urology practice since 1935.

Certification by an American Board of Medical Specialists member board involves a rigorous process of testing and peer evaluation. Specialists in each area of medicine design and administer the procedure.

The Uro-Oncology Tumor Board

Consistent with The Urology Group’s devotion to patient care, since 2011 several of our physicians meet monthly with the Oncology Hematology Consultants (OHC) in Cincinnati to discuss the care of complex cancer of the genitourinary tract. While boards like the Uro-Oncology Tumor Board are typically found only in hospitals or large healthcare organizations, we know that providing the very best patient care requires looking beyond the expertise of our own practice. These meetings, including the best medical minds in the region, are multidisciplinary, involving medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, urologists and pathologists. We discuss and examine difficult cancer cases and review histology slides.

Six Sigma 

The Urology Group committed in 2007 to achieving Six Sigma certification, a measure of quality that strives for perfection through the systematic elimination of defects. The Urology Group has adopted consistent methodologies for establishing and delivering sustained quality improvements across more than 20 Six Sigma certification projects. 

The following three Six Sigma projects focus directly on improved patient care:

  • Improved patient adherence.Our physicians recognized that urodynamics and biofeedback treatment can be uncomfortable for patients—to the extent that they skip their treatments. So we started providing educational information that underscores the value of treatments, and then implemented a system of immediate and automatic scheduling. Both efforts have helped to increase patient engagement and adherence to treatment plans.
  • Prostate biopsy protocol.Our analysis was showing a tendency among patients to overuse antibiotics following prostate biopsies. We found that this was often the result of administering an antibiotic both before and after the procedure, when the antibiotic was still in the system. We instead provided the antibiotic two hours before the biopsy and did not offer it afterward. This regimen dramatically reduced the presence of antibiotics in the bloodstream. 
  • Wrong-side surgery.While The Urology Group has never operated on the wrong side of a patient, procedures that result in such cases are at concerning rates across the United States and abroad. To prevent even the chance of such an incident, our physicians worked closely with the Joint Commission on Healthcare, earning its accreditation for regularly meeting protocols within our group.

In 2016, five employees of The Urology Group achieved Black Belt status in the Six Sigma program: CEO Earl Walz, Jon Gundler, Therese Holden, Erin Hustton and Don Lawson. We are proud of their achievements.

Six Sigma awards:

  • Organizational Impact Award: 2010 American Society for Quality – International Team Excellence Award Competition
  • Participant Award: 2010 American Society for Quality – International Team Excellence Award Competition
  • Gold Award winner: 2009 American Society for Quality – Cincinnati Section Healthcare Quality Award Competition

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