Cari Vida, BS, RHIA, CTR serves as the Vice President of Quality Control, Education & Training for the Oncology Services Division of Registry Partners Incorporated. Cari directly oversees the daily operations of the Quality Control department and State Central Registry and hospital based state reporting cancer registry projects. She provides direct supervision of the Quality Control Director, State Central Registry and State Report Only Project Directors, as well as the Quality Control team. Additionally she provides education and training to the Oncology Services Division staff on industry related changes that will impact their required skill set. Cari presently resides in Bay City, Michigan with her husband Jeremy, daughter Kyla and son Colton.
Cari began working at Registry Partners in October of 2008 as Project Manager and Quality Control Coordinator and later assumed the role of QC Director where she oversaw the daily operations and management of the Registry Partners Incorporated `internal quality control program.
Cari attended Ferris State University in Big Rapids, Michigan, graduating in 1995 with a Bachelors of Science Degree, majoring in Health Information Management. She has also earned two national certifications, Registered Health Information Administrator (RHIA) and Certified Tumor Registrar (CTR), which further reflects her expertise in the health information and oncology fields.
Cari worked at St. Mary’s of Michigan in Saginaw, for 10 years as a Cancer Registrar where she took part in three successful Commission on Cancer, Cancer Program Surveys earning commendations, before accepting her Quality Control/Project Manager position with Registry Partners, Inc.
Q&A with Cari Vida:
What makes your job interesting?
Definitely the people and the work. I enjoy interacting with the management and the CTR teams. I am extremely blessed to have a brilliant team of QC/mentoring managers who are not only passionate about their work but also funny, patient and interesting women. The QC team meets once a month on a Friday via WebEx where we discuss QC issues, difficult case questions and seek each other’s advice. It is a great way for us to connect and provide consistent QC efforts across all projects. I enjoy seeing their smiling faces! The QC team also interacts with the CTRs on their projects. We get to know them very well and we provide ongoing support for the project. I personally enjoy the level of connection we have working in a remote environment.
What methods do you feel are the most beneficial for improving the quality of cancer registry abstracts?
We all are familiar with software edit checks but they are not sophisticated enough to catch each critical error. By reabstracting the patients chart and comparing your findings to the CTRs abstract is one form of quality control. This is one way we perform quality control within Registry Partners on a continuous basis. Reabstraction and reviewing each data field is an intimate way to access the CTRs coding skills and habits. All CTRs want to produce quality work but sometimes they have interpreted a rule incorrectly or simply do not know they have been coding something incorrectly. Communicating the results in a written format supported by resources and page numbers allows the CTRs to learn from their mistakes.
Another method is developing and running QC data reports. This is quality control on a broader scale that can identify coding patterns and opportunities for overall data improvement. QC data reports can be ran monthly, quarterly or at whatever time interval necessary. The QC data reports can be written with both general and site specific criteria including text fields to perform the review of the report. General criteria may consist of pulling and reviewing date of first contact for class of case 20-22 cases or reviewing any race coded to unknown. Site specific criteria may consist of reviewing grade for prostate (are you aware of the 2014+ grade changes?) or reviewing scope of regional lymph node surgery for breast cases to ensure sentinel lymph nodes biopsies are coded accurately. The fields are verified based on the text documentation. We have implemented QC data reports within our QC program at Registry Partners and our QC team runs the data report on a monthly basis to access both general and site specific detail. The findings are communicated to the CTR teams.
Whatever method is being performed, quality control is a powerful tool and in my opinion imperative to validate the accuracy and overall improvement of cancer registry data.