William (Bill) Gilbert

Medical Director, Women's Services
Sutter Health Sacramento

William (Bill) Gilbert, MD, is currently the regional medical director for women’s services for Sutter health in the Sacramento-Sierra region and a clinical professor within the department of OB/GYN, university of California, Davis.  Dr. Gilbert graduated magna cum laude with a B.A. from Westminster College and received his M.D. from University of Missouri.  After completing his residency at Georgetown University he went on to a Dreyfus Foundation Fellowship at King’s College Hospital in London followed by a fellowship in Maternal Fetal Medicine at UCSD.  His clinical practice is in the area of high-risk pregnancies and his research interests are in the areas of birth trauma, cerebral palsy, and amniotic fluid volume regulation. He has received multiple teaching awards for teaching medical students and residents.

The development of the CMQCC is crucial if we are going to be able to decrease the maternal death rate to levels seen elsewhere in the developed world.

Profile in Improvement

In order to create change and improve patient care, Dr. Gilbert recognized that a committee with diverse specialties would create the most effective improvement programs.  The “Quality of care on Labor and Delivery” committee comprised of OB/GYNs, anesthesiologists, RN staff, hospital administration, and pediatric staff was created to address issues that impacted quality of care in a multi-disciplinary approach. 

Over the course of 2 years many new programs have been developed by the committee to improve patient outcomes and safety. One example being the OB Rapid response team, developed over several months for emergency consultation when any member of the health care team felt that a mother or fetus was in danger. In addition they developed a process to improve provider communication, so that patient handoffs and MD-RN communication was adequate for patient safety.  The Quality of Care on L&D committee continues to be a forum for discussion of problems that arise, providing everyone involved an opportunity to be heard, understood, and a common ground found.  With the new teams and communication tools in place, the number of adverse staff interactions on different issues have decreased or disappeared.  Continual education is necessary as new providers come on board, but the improvement process is on going.