By Jackie Horsfall
Kim Sperber visited the Iowa Department of Corrections May 24th to give a presentation about Continuous Quality Improvement. Sperber, the Chief Research officer for Talbert House in Cincinnati Ohio, is a part of the quality assurance workgroup in SRR that helps to research and assess that desired quality of use in policies and procedures are being utilized by staff in institutions and community-based corrections to ensure fidelity in programming and casework. Continuous Quality Assurance is a method of continuously examining processes and making them better by the means of data, team approaches and the involvement of the organization. Jerry Bartruff, director of the Iowa Department of Corrections addressed the staff in the audience, commenting on the important work being done by SRR and the massive undertaking with quality assurance.
“I am proud that we are doing this in the state,” said Bartruff.
Sperber addressed how CQI in organizations demonstrated better outcomes and thus can help aid in lowering recidivism.
“System issues are one of the biggest factors that make people quit their job,” said Sperber.
The staff in the audience was then split into eights groups all to discuss goals, challenges and steps moving forward. Comments for goals included stakeholder education and program fidelity. Challenges included staff resources and time. Future steps included education of all staff of the benefits and utilization of the CQI process. The SRR staff in Des Moines is currently developing a strategy to spread knowledge of CQI to community based corrections and institutional staff.