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Employee Spotlight – Quality Department

Interview conducted by: Nichole Buckley, Specialist

The Vital Decisions Quality Department is led by Bethany Cardillo, LMFT, VP Learning and Development, Maryann Radice, MSW, Quality Assurance Manager.

Continuous Quality Monitoring:
Vital Decisions utilizes a continuous quality monitoring process to ensure excellence in service delivery. As part of our Learning and Development team, the quality program helps ensure core clinical competencies are achieved and demonstrated. 100% of the direct services provided to clients are recorded for quality monitoring and training purposes. Vital Decisions employs a quality coding team whose sole function is to monitor program delivery using a proprietary coding tool. Qualitative and quantitative feedback reports are provided to foster learning and development of our clinical staff and clinical interventions.

Meet the Quality Department Coding Specialists:

  Karin Wilson      Alexander Waitt     Christine Bender

 

☀ What does a Quality Coding Specialist at Vital Decisions do?

KW – A Quality Coding Specialist listens to randomized calls and full cases (an entire set of calls with one client) from Specialists and codes them using a scale. We listen for general feedback and to help learning and development.

 

☀ How did you get into this work? 

KW – While living in the UK, I worked as a psychologist within the National Healthcare System (NHS) in inpatient and outpatient within a hospital setting. I then became involved in randomized controlled research trials in the USA that were focused on motivational interviewing.  In addition, I have been a MINT* member since 2002 and I have been involved in Motivational Interviewing (MI) training and consulting with numerous organizations. I’ve been with Vital Decisions since 2016. I learned about the organization through MINT.

* MINT is the Motivational Interviewing Network of Trainers

AW– I have my LPC along with my masters in counseling psychology and adult learning. In addition, I am just finishing up my PHD in counselor education. I learned how to do motivational interviewing in the context of crisis work and fell in love with it.  I sought supervision independently and in the spirit of working with the supervisor I became a member of MINT in 2014. This brought me to start expanding MI in different settings. I learned how to code as a part of a couple other projects I was doing for other healthcare systems. I started working at Vital Decisions in 2018.

CB – I have my Bachelor’s, Master’s and a license in Social work. I worked part-time in an outpatient mental health clinic for 5 years. In addition, since I graduated 8 years ago, I continue to work full-time in quality improvement and compliance in the same outpatient clinic. I also have been an EMT for 13 years and help train for CPR certification and mental health first aid. I heard about Vital Decisions through co-workers at my previous job who decided to join Vital Decisions and so I applied too. I’ve been with the company since 2017.

 

☀ How do you see Motivational Interviewing (MI) as being beneficial in doing Advance Care Planning (ACP) work?

KW– Motivational interviewing is beneficial when talking about advance care planning because of the collaborative nature of motivational interviewing, along with the concept in MI of being a guide. With the choices in advance care planning being so personal to each individual, MI can play a valuable role in providing information about ACP along with conveying understanding of the client’s experience and doing it in a way that emphasizes the client’s autonomy with the decisions they make.

AW – I think motivational interviewing is absolutely necessary. In order for advance care planning to be done well, I think there needs to be a way of helping people resolve their ambivalence about it.  The heart of our program is figuring out if someone wants to do ACP.  If you start discussing ACP before helping someone determine if they really want to, what you get is someone not participating the way they could.


CB – I think the collaboration and focus on partnership is what is most beneficial for advance care planning, and you get that using motivational interviewing.

 

 

☀ What makes Vital Decisions different than any other organization you’ve been a part of?

KW – I appreciate how innovative the company is in many ways including implementing an evidence-based practice throughout the organization. I appreciate the transparency of the organization and I appreciate the genuineness of the management and their desire to make a valuable impact on people’s lives at a time  when they are most stressed with health issues. I appreciate the flexibility of the organization with its employees and I admire the lengths the company is willing to go to in order to train employees to have a good work experience and thereby have a positive impact on the lives of clients.

AW – The focus of integrating motivational interviewing into this process by being able to deliver the service in an honest and authentic way is what it makes it very different. There are many resources put into this to ensure everyone has what is needed to do really good work. Vital Decisions is really invested in Specialists being able to do the best quality work which is something I have not experienced in other organizations.

CB – I think top down communication is the biggest.  I appreciate the transparency and the communication sent out explaining decisions.  The health care environment is always changing so it is nice to hear leadership’s perspectives.

 

☀ If you spoke to someone who’s never heard of Vital Decisions, what would you want them to know?

CB – I feel we have a positive and collaborative culture. Even though I am remote, I still feel I have an idea about what goes on.  The people who work here are very passionate about motivational interviewing and advance care planning.

 

☀ What’s a unique fact about you that someone might not guess?

KW – I’m involved in dog rescue and I’m known as a “foster failure” – the term used for fosters who end up adopting their foster dogs of which I currently have 4!


AW
– I have three children from a previous marriage.  I am an endurance athlete and perform triathlons and marathons.  I also enjoy reading.


CB
– I love animals and my dream would be to open up a petting zoo.  I also have a 17 month old son and a dog.

 

 

Bethany Cardillo,<br />
VP Learning and Development
Bethany Cardillo,
VP Learning and Development
“Our Coding Team are Rock Stars! Their desire to assist in our delivery of an excellent service for our clients is so evident. Christine, Alex, and Karin are wonderful to work with; we’re very fortunate to have them within our organization.”
Alex, Christine, and Karin are among the unsung heroes of Vital Decisions. Clinical quality coding is demanding work, and they do it with exceptional skill and dedication. Quietly and behind the scenes, the coding team provides a reliable window into the ongoing work of our specialists and coordinators—allowing us to recognize excellent practice and pinpoint areas for continuing growth.
I have had the pleasure of working closely with Alex, Christine, and Karin over the past year, as the coding they’ve been asked to do has evolved in alignment with the evolution of our programs. It has been a true collaboration, and I have been grateful for their crucial contribution to the quality of the services we offer.”
Allan Zuckoff, VP,<br />
Clinical Program Development
Allan Zuckoff, VP,
Clinical Program Development
Maryann Radice,<br />
Quality Assurance Manager
Maryann Radice,
Quality Assurance Manager
“I feel lucky to have Alex, Christine, and Karin on my team. Although they work fully remote and have never met in person, their rapport and camaraderie is a shining example of a highly functioning team. They are dedicated to providing reliable and valid data for the organization to make evidenced based decisions, and always seeking opportunities to positively contribute to the professional development of our Specialists.”