Get the FACTs on quality of City of Hope's stem cell transplant program

November 4, 2014 | by Darrin Joy

Among bone marrow and stem cell transplant programs, one measure of quality stands out: accreditation by the Foundation for the Accreditation of Cellular Therapy, or FACT. Now, City of Hope's program has received a full three-year accreditation from FACT — its fourth since first applying in 2004.

Stem cell transplant City of Hope's stem cell transplant program has received a full three-year accreditation from FACT — the fourth since first applying in 2004.

The accreditation — which is now required by many insurance payors — applies to all City of Hope services and facilities inspected by FACT. These include adult and pediatric autologous (self-donated) and allogeneic (donor-derived) blood stem cell transplantation, bone marrow and peripheral blood cellular therapy product collection, and cellular therapy product processing.

Eileen Smith, M.D., associate director of clinical research in the Department of Hematology & Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation (HCT), says that FACT “is the most important accreditation for transplant programs in the U.S.” She helped oversee the accreditation process in collaboration with David Snyder, M.D., director of quality management for the HCT Program.

“FACT accreditation is similar to Joint Commission accreditation — it gives patients, payors and referring physicians confidence that we’re among the top centers in the country,” Smith said.

A team effort

Compliance with FACT standards is an ongoing process involving many departments and staff members who care for transplant patients and donors. In addition to participating in the on-site accreditation inspection by the FACT surveyors every three years, City of Hope also voluntarily submits annual reports of transplant activities to FACT.

Smith attributed the successful accreditation to strong collaboration among several teams, including the HCT Quality Management Council and the Division of Transfusion Medicine, and departments of Research Information Sciences and Quality, Risk and Regulatory Management.

“In particular, I want to acknowledge and congratulate Mark Kaniewski, transfusion medicine compliance officer, Kathie Viers, HCT quality management supervisor, and Adina Londrc, director of Clinical Research Information Support, for their key roles in preparing us for the FACT inspection,” Smith said.

Stephen Forman, M.D., Francis & Kathleen McNamara Distinguished Chair in Hematology and Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation, directs the HCT Program. “FACT accreditation is extremely important to our program and to City of Hope as a whole,” he said. “The entire team — physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, nurses and pharmacists — should take great pride in this achievement.”

About FACT

FACT was co-founded in 1996 by the International Society for Cellular Therapy and the American Society of Blood and Marrow Transplantation. Its purpose is to establish standards for quality medical and laboratory practice in cellular therapies and enable voluntary inspection and accreditation in the cellular therapy field.

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Learn more about bone marrow and blood stem cell transplants at City of Hope, a world leader in hematopoietic stem cell transplants.

Learn more about becoming a patient or getting a second opinion at City of Hope by visiting our website or by calling 800-826-HOPE (4673). City of Hope staff will explain what's required for a consult at City of Hope and help you determine, before you come in, whether or not your insurance will pay for the appointment.

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