QUALITY IMPROVEMENT 7
Intoday’s world, people have become self-aware of their rights andhow service providers should treat them. It is due to the informationmade freely available to them, and this has forced the providers,particularly in the health department to improve the level ofservices they offer to their clients. Quality improvement is anattribute that should be taught to employees to ensure the smooth andefficient running of activities and to improve customer relations inthe entire organization.
Qualityimprovement is a systematic and continuous action that leads to animprovement that can is measured in the health care services andstatus of specific targeted groups. The performance of health care isdefined by mostly the level of patient satisfaction and anorganizations` efficiency when it comes to giving care. Quality isjudged by an organization`s approach to service delivery or theirsystem of care. For a QI to be successful it must incorporate thefollowing
a)Shouldwork as systems and processes
Anorganization has to understand its delivery system and criticalprocess so as to make improvements. Processes within a body containtwo components, what is done and how it should be done. Improvementsare done by addressing either of the two, but for great success, bothshould be addressed together.
Oneof the most important measures of quality is by the varying extentthat patients’ needs and expectations have been met. For anorganization to ensure this, they need to provide safety to patients,coordinate care with other sectors of the health care system andprovide a detailed care provision of their patients.
c)Focuson being part of a team
Qualityimprovement is a team process. It becomes the responsibility of everyteam member to contribute and be active in all the activities sincethe process might include different fields in which no one can befamiliar in all of them.
d)Focuson use of data
Datais the backbone of QI. It is used to explain the workings of currentsystems and what it would mean if changes are made. Data helps theorganization to know what is happening at present and to alsodocuments achievement of objectives.
Goalsof the Minnesota Department of health (MDH)
TheMinnesota Department of health seeks to change the culture of qualityprovision across an entire organization. Also ensuring that staffdoes not see offering quality as extra work but as a duty that theyshould accomplish without supervision since it is ingrained in theirattitude and behavior in work. Even if there is a change inleadership the employees remain fully committed to quality withoutcompromise.
TheMDH also seeks to establish an efficient performance managementsystem. They aim for performance management to occur in all thelevels of an organization and also including the employees in makingeveryday improvements. Data used for making a decision throughestablishing standards and results the data is used to monitor,measure and communicate the progress of the expected results.
Thedepartment also aims to improve the structure of quality across alllevels of the organization. Quality improvement should be disregardeddue hierarchy in the organization but should be upheld by everyleader, subordinate and staff.
Effectivepublic health requires good goals that monitor the progress of goalachievement. A SMART goal should be measurable, specific, achievable,relevant and time-bound.
Itshould be specific in the sense that it has clearly definedobjectives that are understood by the team
Theis the criteria to be used to measure the level of improvement or howmuch success is derived from the target.
Thetargets set should be within a clearly defined timeframe that willnot delay the achievements of the team and will act as a motivationto them.
Theobjectives should not be too farfetched that the team cannotaccomplish regardless of time. They should be considerate andprobable.
Objectivesshould also correspond with the goals to be achieved and should nottake the team members off target wasting time on activities that donot matter.
Exampleof SMART objectives
i.Public health staff to meet with stakeholders at colleges in theirjurisdiction so as to get three or four colleges working ontobacco-free ground policies at their respective institutions.
ii.Reducing the percentage of 9th graders with obesity from 8% to 7%by December 31, 2019.
iii.USA County management to offer quality improvement training tostaff giving a 75% raise of informed employees by December 31st,2019.
HITand quality improvement
HealthInformation Technology is a critical tool in QI since it helps toshare, store and analyze health data. Healthcare providers areturning to HIT to improve the care of patients and also to maintainrelations with patients even when they are not in the hospital.
Toconclude quality improvement is a critical tool especially in healthand it fosters good relations not only with employees and patientsbut also managers and their subordinates in the working hierarchy.All organization should make a continuous assessment of where to makequality improvements since the health sector is ever changing.
Lifvergren,S. (2013). in Healthcare. Chalmers the Universityof Technology.
SMARTObjectives – Public Health & QI Toolbox – Minnesota Dept. ofHealth. (2016). Health.state.mn.us. Retrieved 10 November 2016, fromhttp://www.health.state.mn.us/divs/opi/qi/toolbox/objectives.html
StatePublic Health | ASTHO. (2016). Astho.org. Retrieved 10 November 2016,fromhttp://www.astho.org/accreditation-and…/mdh-quality-improvement-plan/
Whatis Health Information Technology (Health IT)? | Patients &Families | HealthIT.gov. (2016). Healthit.gov. Retrieved 10 November2016, fromhttps://www.healthit.gov/patients-families/basics-health-it