Quality management is the collection and evaluation of data with the purpose of defining and then improving outcomes of care. Quality management programs turn data into information that can be used to make changes in practice (Dutton, 2013). The main purpose of quality management programs is to improve patient care. Patient care can be improved by incorporating the six goals recommended by the Institute of Medicine into quality management programs. The six goals include safety, effective, patient-centered, timely, efficient, and equitable care. The purpose of this paper is to analyze the key components of a quality management program, and to compare the characteristics of a quality management program from traditional quality assurance.
Key Components of Quality Management
The key components of a quality management program include structure criteria, process criteria, outcome criteria, systems thinking, customer focus, and knowledge for improvement. Structural measures of health care performance focus on the environment in which care and services are provided (Kongstvedt, 2013). Structural measures provide evidence of the managed care organization’s ability to furnish services. Many of these measures are requirements of local, state, and federal regulations that govern licensing or accreditation. Accreditation and regulatory bodies emphasize structural criteria because of their ease of documentation and vital requirement upon which a quality program is built (Kongstvedt, 2013). Process measures focus on the way in which care is provided. The Institute of Medicine (IOM) directs managed care organizations to focus their process improvement measures on safe, effective, timely, patient-centered, effi...
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... need. If desired change is not accomplished or customer need is not met, the quality management program will repeat the continuous improvement process.
Traditional quality assurance and modern quality management programs focus on improving patient care. Traditional quality assurance programs provide the vital tools for quality assessment. The founding principles of the traditional quality assurance program are structure, process and outcome criteria. Modern quality management programs are based on the founding principles of quality assurance and the incorporation of the Institute of Medicine’s improvement aims. Current quality management programs use continuous improvement processes models in an ongoing effort to improve the organization 's services and processes. Quality management programs are an essential component of healthcare organizations today.
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