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September 9, 2011

Billings Clinic Awarded Certification from Joint Commission for Knee Replacement

Billings, MT — Billings Clinic’s Orthopedics and Sports Medicine has earned the Gold Seal of Approval™ for health care quality. The Joint Commission awarded Billings Clinic Disease-Specific Care Certification for knee replacement.

To earn this distinction, a disease management program undergoes an extensive, unannounced, on-site evaluation by a team of Joint Commission reviewers every two years. A team of Joint Commission expert surveyors evaluated Billings Clinic for compliance with standards of care specific to the needs of patients and families, including infection prevention and control, leadership and medication management. The program is evaluated against Joint Commission standards through an assessment of a program’s processes, the program’s ability to evaluate and improve care within its own organization, and interviews with patients and staff.

“This award is evidence of our commitment to deliver care at the highest level of both quality and safety,” says Matthew Kopplin, MD, orthopedic surgeon at Billings Clinic Orthopedic and Sports Medicine department. “Joint Commission has awarded us certification for both hip replacement and for knee replacement. We’re proud to achieve this level of distinction.”

Billings Clinic performed 580 joint replacement surgeries in fiscal year 2011 that include total hip, total knee and partial hip replacement procedures.

Certification requirements address three areas:

  • Compliance with consensus-based national standards and safety goals.
  • Effective use of evidence-based clinical practice guidelines to manage and optimize care.
  • An organized approach to performance measurement and improvement activities.

Quality Reports for Joint Commission certified Disease-Specific Care Programs are available on the Quality Check™ Web site, In 2009, a new “Certified Organizations” tab has been added to the site.

The Joint Commission launched its Disease-Specific Care Certification program in 2002. It is the first program of its kind in the country to certify disease management programs. A list of programs certified by the Joint Commission is available at

Founded in 1951, The Joint Commission seeks to continuously improve the safety and quality of care provided to the public through the provision of health care accreditation and related services that support performance improvement in health care organizations. The Joint Commission evaluates and accredits nearly 15,000 health care organizations and programs in the United States, including more than 8,000 hospitals and home care organizations, and more than 6,800 other health care organizations that provide long term care, assisted living, behavioral health care, laboratory and ambulatory care services. The Joint Commission also accredits health plans, integrated delivery networks, and other managed care entities. In addition, the Joint Commission provides certification of disease-specific care programs, primary stroke centers, and health care staffing services. An independent, not-for-profit organization, the Joint Commission is the nation's oldest and largest standards-setting and accrediting body in health care. Learn more about the Joint Commission at

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