Foundational Frameworks for QI
The foundational frameworks for QI are the bases upon which quality improvement efforts are organized. It involves, in large part, an understanding of what quality entails, and the steps that would be taken to improve the quality. The frameworks upon which quality improvement are based should reflect the underlying problems or bottlenecks that prevent the ultimate performance of the healthcare sector. As such, the foundational frameworks of quality improvement are such goals as making healthcare universally accessible, affordable, effective and efficient. They are based on the emphasis of quality improvement in various sectors in healthcare. Therefore, the frameworks of quality improvement could be described as such quantitative parameters of measuring quality such as the rates of immunization, the rate of reduction of maternal death during childbearing, number of patients served per physician per day and so on and so forth.
Differences in Stakeholders Definitions of Quality
The different stakeholders in the healthcare sector all have slightly differing interests. Doctors, for instance, are more interested in diagnosing and treating diseases than they are in the general administration of the hospital or healthcare facilities. Nurses would be interested in facilitating the recovery of ill patients. Administrators, on the other hand, might be interested in procurement of equipment, maintenance of facilities and recruitment of healthcare professionals.
The definitions of quality among the stakeholders of the healthcare sector may, therefore, differ in accordance with their main concerns within the sector (Weiser et. al, 2010). For doctors, for instance, quality will entail the availability of an enabling environment for them to perform their diagnostic and treatment duties effectively. This would involve the availability of the best surgical equipment, the best equipped laboratories, and minimal bureaucracy. For the administrator, quality improvement would entail a continuous effort to improve payment methods so that they are efficient for the healthcare facility and convenient for the patient. Quality improvement for the administration would also entail better statistics in terms of the outcome of patients who are admitted. Quality improvement would also mean that the procurement procedures are continually modified to ensure that all procurements are done in time so that no program is paralyzed by unforeseen delays. Thus, various stakeholders in the healthcare sector will have differing perspectives of quality improvement based on their particular interests in the healthcare.
Role of Various Clinicians and Patients in QI
Both clinicians and patients have a role to play in quality improvement in the healthcare sector. While clinicians are well trained individuals whose training and experience should guide them to making useful recommendations towards the improvement of healthcare delivery, patients are often people with little knowledge about the workings of the healthcare sector. However, they may provide feedback that would be useful in making serious decisions about improvement of healthcare delivery.
Clinicians have requisite knowledge that would help them gage the quality of the healthcare that is delivered in one hospital as compared to that in another. Not only does that knowledge impart upon them the quality of being able to assess the quality of healthcare in a hospital setting, but also to know what to expect as good standards. Therefore, clinicians have the duty to dictate what standards they expect of the healthcare facilities so that they can assess whether these standards have been met.
Patients, on the other hand, play the invaluable role of providing feedback for purposes of progress assessment. They can do this in a variety of ways, including giving their opinions about the quality of service they have received, or providing data on how effective a particular treatment is and so forth.
Why Quality Management Is Needed in the Healthcare Industry
The sensitivity of the healthcare industry dictates that standards have to be continuously monitored and improved. This is because of the heavy burden of human life that the healthcare industry bears. The healthcare industry must not wait for disaster to happen so that it can react to it. Players in the healthcare industry must be proactive, predicting and pre-empting things that may make the system fail. If quality management is not practiced in the healthcare industry, the price to pay is very huge – human life. Therefore, there is a clear reason why quality management is crucial in the healthcare industry.
Areas to be monitored for quality
There are several areas that need to be monitored for quality in the healthcare sector. However, there are key areas that cannot afford to do without quality management. One is sanitation. Healthcare facilities must make sure that they put in place the most effective sanitation measures, since sick people are usually extremely vulnerable to any sort of disease. Furthermore, improper sanitation may even facilitate spread of infections from the hospital to the outside population.
Procurement of equipment also needs to be monitored for quality because of the vital role that modern equipment play in medicine today. Another area is service delivery by the clinicians. The clinicians need to constantly the service they provide to sick people who approach them for help.
Roles of various accrediting and regulatory organizations and helpful resources and organizations that affect QI
Accrediting and regulatory organizations help to certify standards. This is crucial in quality improvement because health facilities need to have certain minimum standards by which they must all abide. Accrediting and regulatory organizations ensure that these standards are met uniformly across all health facilities (Durham, 2008). Such organizations as the Joint Commission on Accreditation Of Healthcare Organizations are helpful in ensuring that all healthcare facilities meet certain basic standards.