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This book provides a review of basic terminology and offers guidelines to the untrained researcher for carrying out 'nuts-and-bolts' quality improvement research. Fourteen case studies involving actual health care situations help to demonstrate how such a research project can be implemented.
The book contains black-and-white illustrations.
In the current atmosphere of closer scrutiny of health care practices and procedures, front-line managers and health care providers must investigate potential problems in their work environment, whether at the behest of upper management, in order to meet Joint Commission on Accreditation of Health Care Organizations (JCAHO) standards, or through their own sense that "we’re doing something wrong." For the investigator with limited previous experience in evaluation or research, the prospect of undertaking this kind of investigation can appear daunting, to say the least. Quality Improvement Projects in Health Care was written just for this individual. Author Eleanor Gilpatrick, a seasoned investigator and professor of health services administration, provides a review of the basic terminology and guidelines for carrying out "nuts-and-bolts" quality improvement research. She then demonstrates how such a research project can be implemented through 14 case studies involving actual health care situations. Altogether, the cases speak to a broad array of issues and potential pitfalls for the unwary investigator and they show that progress can be made in even the most difficult circumstances.
PART ONE: BASIC CONCEPTS AND MANUAL
Does the Problem Really Exist?
Finding and Verifying Causes
Implementing Solutions and Making Them Operational
PART TWO: CASES
Getting Nursing Home Residents into Physical Therapy in a Timely Fashion
Patients Waiting for Radiation during Scheduled Visits
Late Notification of Critical Values by a Hospital Laboratory
Time Spent in Rehabilitation by Amputation Patients in a Municipal Hospital
Incomplete Laboratory Referrals in an HMO Center
HMO Patients' Problems with Crutches and Canes
Dealing with Hemolyzed Blood Samples in a Hospital Laboratory
Errors in Filling Prescriptions in a Hospital Pharmacy
A Labor-Management Health and Safety Committee
Nurse Attendance at Mandated Classes in an Outpatient Department
Compliance with Discussions and Documentation of Advance Directives in a Home Care Agency
Use of a Reminder Letter To Encourage Follow-Up Visits
Use of an Internal Audit in an Intermediate Care Facility
Use of Data on Unusual Occurrences in an Emergency Medical Service