The Joint Commission Establishes President's Fellowship for Healthcare Quality and Safety

Dr. Carla Pugh of Stanford Medicine becomes the inaugural fellow

OAKBROOK TERRACE, Illinois, March 14, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Joint Commission has established The President’s Fellowship for Healthcare Quality and Safety, a prestigious program for a highly qualified healthcare professional to collaborate with The Joint Commission to advance healthcare outcomes globally. This high honor is reserved for a distinguished professional ascending in a career dedicated to advancing healthcare performance. Fellows will immediately contribute their specific expertise to positively impact The Joint Commission’s vision that all patients, in all settings, receive the best care.

The new fellowship, which reports directly to Joint Commission enterprise President and Chief Executive Officer Jonathan B. Perlin, MD, PhD, aligns an accomplished fellow’s specific background and achievements with key Joint Commission initiatives while supporting the Fellow’s career development as an influential leader in quality and safety. 

We are pleased to announce the inaugural fellow, Carla Pugh, MD, PhD, professor of surgery at the Stanford School of Medicine and director of the Technology Enabled Clinical Improvement (T.E.C.I.) Center at Stanford Medicine. She has distinguished contributions in quantitative assessment of surgical performance and outcomes, bringing a clinician’s perspective on using data to close the gap between processes and outcomes.

Dr. Pugh will collaborate directly with The Joint Commission’s innovation organization and its affiliate, the National Quality Forum (NQF).

“Establishing The President’s Fellowship for Healthcare Quality and Safety is an exciting way to introduce fresh perspectives to The Joint Commission’s efforts to support healthcare organizations’ delivery of safe, high-quality, equitable and compassionate care,” says Dr. Perlin. “We are delighted Dr. Pugh has joined us as our inaugural fellow and look forward to working with her to advance quantitative methods of performance assessment and improvement.”

Dr. Pugh obtained her undergraduate degree at the University of California, Berkeley in neurobiology and her medical degree at Howard University College of Medicine, Washington D.C. Upon completion of her surgical training at Howard University Hospital, she attended Stanford University to obtain her PhD in education. A general surgeon by training, her research involves the use of simulation and advanced engineering technologies to develop new approaches for assessing and defining competency in clinical procedural skills.

“I am excited to embark on this exceptional opportunity to contribute to advancing quality globally as the first Joint Commission Presidential fellow. I look forward to working with colleagues in implementing new approaches to surgical performance improvement,” says Dr. Pugh.

Applications from mid-career healthcare professionals for The Joint Commission’s 2025 President’s Fellowship for Healthcare Quality and Safety (which spans the calendar year) are currently being accepted. If you are interested in learning more about this opportunity, please contact Michael Kaba, Executive Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer, at for more information.


About The Joint Commission
Founded in 1951, The Joint Commission seeks to continuously improve health care for the public, in collaboration with other stakeholders, by evaluating health care organizations and inspiring them to excel in providing safe and effective care of the highest quality and value. The Joint Commission accredits and certifies more than 22,000 health care organizations and programs in the United States. An independent, nonprofit 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


Dr. Carla Pugh of Stanford Medicine

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