HUP’s Stem Cell & Bone Marrow Transplant Program recently received reached its tenth year of accreditation by the Foundation for the Accreditation of Cellular Therapy (FACT), one of the first in the region to do so. These voluntary accreditations have helped make Penn’s program one of the best in the nation, said Edward Stadtmauer, MD, program director. “This process makes sure field standards are met but it’s also an intellectual learning experience. It makes us think through our processes. There are many ways to do something well … or even better.”
FACT is a non-profit organization cofounded by the International Society for Cellular Therapy and the American Society of Blood and Marrow Transplantation for the purpose of voluntary inspection and accreditation in the field of cellular therapy. Inspectors are leaders in the field, including Stadtmauer.
According to Kathy Cunningham, Clinical and Quality Management coordinator, the accreditation process examines multiple services within the hospital: everything surrounding the clinical aspect, collection and processing of stem cells. These services include clinical services such as peri-op, the OR, ED, and pharmacy, as well as EVS and nutrition.
“There’s no question: these processes have improved the outcome of patients,” Stadtmauer said. “The number of patients going into the ICU after transplant has decreased while the likelihood of coming out of the ICU to go home and live a good life has increased tremendously.”
As the size of Penn’s program has increased – from 30 transplants in 1987 to about 300 a year -- “having standard procedures that are validated and reviewed has become more and more important,” he continued. “The review process has led to good things. It’s a recognition of our outstanding personnel and the work that we do.”