Texas Hospital Association
THA Bill Aston Award for Quality
Photo of Bill Aston
Bill Aston

Across the state, THA-member hospitals are championing innovative quality and patient safety initiatives that are showing measurable success in improving quality and patient outcomes. In keeping with the Association’s initiatives to promote quality and patient safety in Texas hospitals, THA established the THA Bill Aston Award for Quality in 2010. The award honors hospitals that have distinguished themselves through measurable success in improving quality and patient outcomes through the sustained implementation of a national and/or state evidence-based patient care initiative that involves physicians, hospital governing board members and staff.


The late W.W. “Bill” Aston was an exemplary leader who worked tirelessly to improve health care for the people in his community. He served on the Baylor University Medical Center board for 25 years and served on the board of Baylor Health Care System from 2005 to 2010. In 2010, THA established the Bill Aston Award for Quality through the Baylor Health Care System endowment.

“Mr. Aston was a strong advocate and champion for providing the highest level of safe, quality, compassionate care for all patients throughout the Baylor Health Care System,” said Joel Allison, president and chief executive officer of Baylor Health Care System. “He will be remembered for his commitment to quality. He wanted nothing but the best. He always wanted excellence and he constantly reminded us it’s about putting the patient first.”

Eligibility and Nomination Information

Hospitals or health systems that are active institutional members of THA, their medical staff members and staff are eligible for this award. Nominated projects must demonstrate improved outcomes in patient care, and be related to a national or state standard for improved patient care. Projects must demonstrate ongoing involvement by both physicians and trustees.

Selection Criteria
Applicants will be evaluated on the following criteria:

  1. A maximum of three Bill Aston awards may be awarded each year: one to an academic institution or large teaching hospital member; second to a non-research non-teaching member; and the third to a rural hospital member.
  2. The project/initiative submitted must demonstrate and document improved outcomes in patient care. Metrics might include reductions in specific infection rates or readmissions for specific diagnoses or increased compliance with specific protocols. Consideration will include the rate or delta of improvement.
  3. The project/initiative should be related to a national or state standard regarding improved patient care. Any clinic or nationally recognized issue, identification of an institutional problem or challenge, or team decision based on clinical factors or indicators is ideal.
  4. The project/initiative must have documented sustained effectiveness; a minimum of one year of improved performance/outcomes is required. The project/initiative must have been initiated in the last three years.
  5. Preference will be given to projects/initiatives that have been replicated and sustained within the entrant facility.
  6. The project/initiative must demonstrate the ongoing involvement of physicians.
  7. The project/initiative must demonstrate an ongoing role for the hospital governing board. For example, regular reports or educational activities related to the project for governing board members could demonstrate the board’s involvement.

Selection Committee
The Selection Committee is composed of one member of the Texas Healthcare Trustees board, a member of the THA Board of Trustees, the THA president/chief executive officer, a representative of the TMF Health Quality Institute, and a representative of the previous year’s winners. Hospitals represented on the Selection Committee are ineligible to receive the award during the member’s committee tenure. Hospital representatives serve one-year terms.

The honorees will be featured in THA publications and recognized at the THA Annual Conference and Expo, Jan. 21-22, 2016, in Dallas.

All entries will be featured in THA’s best practices portal, KnowledgeShare. Competition is strong for these awards, and as a result many great ideas don’t get the recognition they deserve. KnowledgeShare is an online library of great ideas, innovative programs and best practices in action at THA-member hospitals. All entries will be featured on the website so that members can learn from your innovations.

THA Bill Aston Award for Quality Nomination Process

Step 1. Complete the nomination form, attaching up to 15 pages of supporting documents including a one-page summary and program description.

Step 2. Complete the KnowledgeShare submission form.

Step 3. Be sure all materials are completed and SUBMITTED by 5 p.m., Sept. 25, 2015.

Questions? Contact Ollie Jo Bozeman, obozeman@tha.org, 512/465-1007 or fax 512/692-2949.


Subsidiaries and Affiliates


Texas Hospital Insurance Exchange

Texas Hospital Association Foundation

Texas Healthcare Trustees


According to Texas Government Code 305.027, portions of this material may be considered “legislative advertising.” Authorization for its publication is made by John Hawkins, Texas Hospital Association, 1108 Lavaca, Suite 700, Austin, Texas, 78701-2180.