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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: James Aiman, MD (Medical College of Wisconsin)
Description: This is a comprehensive resource that teaches obstetricians and gynecologists why they should participate in quality assessment and how to do it. After four introductory chapters, the remaining chapters offer specific problem-focused guidelines for patient care audit.
Purpose: The purpose is to help those in obstetrics and gynecology understand and implement audit, i.e., quality assessment and maintenance of quality medical care. These are worthy objectives that the authors have met in a most comprehensive manner.
Audience: This book is written for "all of those involved in obstetrics and gynecology . . . ." This includes obstetricians and gynecologists, family practitioners, midwives, and others. Though I am not familiar with the qualifications of many of the contributors for their subject, each has written a thorough and practical approach to quality assessment and improvement.
Features: The illustrations are few, but few are appropriate. There are many useful tables for classification and coding of appropriate outcome measures. This is a plain text with a wealth of important information. The appendixes, notably those in the chapter on infertility services, are especially good: technique of life-table analysis, codes for infertility diagnoses and treatment, and proposed data forms.
Assessment: This volume is better than a comparable publication by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) (Quality Assessment and Improvement in Obstetrics and Gynecology). Foremost, it provides a thorough discussion of what quality assessment is and is not, what should and should not be audited, and pertinent clinical variables justifying an audit. Although this book can stand alone as a single resource, American obstetricians and gynecologists will find this and the ACOG publication effective companion publications to implement a system of quality assessment.