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SEATTLE – (March 23, 2015) — The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has issued a report profiling the experiences of Virginia Mason and 19 other hospitals and community health centers in the U.S. that use inter-professional collaboration to achieve better patient outcomes.

The report details the successes of these organizations in advancing cooperation among physicians, nurses, nutritionists, psychologists and other appropriate health professionals from the planning stages through various phases of a patient’s treatment. The patient and the patient’s family are also considered part of the treatment team.

“Collaboration ensures that everyone involved in the patient’s care is working together as a team with the shared purpose of meeting the specific needs of the patient,” said Charleen Tachibana, DNP, MN, RN, senior vice president for Quality/Safety and Chief Nursing Officer at Virginia Mason.

The report, titled “Lessons from the Field: Promising Inter-Professional Collaboration Practices,” helps health care entities assess the benefits of collaboration and offers a road map to implementing the approach. View the executive summary and full report.

The report also includes a case study of the Virginia Mason Production System, the management system at Virginia Mason that has earned the nonprofit organization international acclaim for innovations in care quality and patient safety.

The document distills the principles and practices that collaborative organizations like Virginia Mason use every day in their treatment of patients.

“These organizations demonstrate that inter-professional collaboration is not only viable, but that it works well for both the patient and the team caring for the patient,” said Robert Wood Johnson Foundation President and CEO Risa Lavizzo-Mourey. “We can learn a great deal from the organizations that are breaking the old mold and that are employing practices that can help us to achieve a Culture of Health.”

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, based in Princeton, N.J, is the largest philanthropy in the nation focused solely on health.

About Virginia Mason
Virginia Mason, founded in 1920, is a nonprofit regional health care system in Seattle that serves the Pacific Northwest. Virginia Mason employs about 6,000 people and includes a 336-bed acute-care hospital; a primary and specialty care group practice of more than 460 physicians; regional medical centers throughout the Puget Sound area; and Bailey-Boushay House, the first skilled-nursing and outpatient chronic care management program in the U.S. designed and built specifically to meet the needs of people with HIV/AIDS. Benaroya Research Institute at Virginia Mason is internationally recognized for its breakthrough autoimmune disease research. Virginia Mason was the first health system to apply lean manufacturing principles to health care delivery to eliminate waste, lower cost, and improve quality and patient safety.

To learn more about Virginia Mason, please visit or follow @VirginiaMason on Twitter. To learn how Virginia Mason is transforming health care and to join the conversation, visit our blog at

Media Contact:
Gale Robinette
Virginia Mason Media Relations
(206) 341-1509

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