Quality Improvement Program in Health Care

Introduction

As the nation looks forward to reforms in health care, the key areas of reforms are the provision of improved health care services and better delivery of the services by the health care practitioners. It is, therefore, critical to invest in tools and training services that are required in bringing the much-needed transformation in the health care delivery systems (Damberg et al., 2010).

The purpose of this quality improvement initiative is to enhance the provision of health care that is patient-centered, equitable, efficient, timely, effective, and safe. Patient-centered health care services will ensure that the kind of care that the patient receives is respectful and responsive to their needs and values. Equitable health care services provide the platform for the provision of uniform services to all patients regardless of differences in characteristics of socioeconomic status, gender, ethnicity, and geographic location. Efficient service provision will ensure that there is minimal or no waste of supplies, energy, ideas, or equipment by practitioners as they provide health care. Timely health care provision reduces waits and delays that could be harmful; for both caregivers and receivers. Effectiveness in health care provision will see to it that health care services provided are directed to those likely to benefit as opposed to those who are not likely to benefit. This is all based on scientific knowledge. Finally, the initiative purposes to ensure improvement in the delivery of safe health care that avoids injuries to patients seeking that care (Stevens et al., 2010).

The program

The quality improvement initiative program targets patients suffering from diabetes. There are a considerable number of patients with diabetes in the vicinity. These patients require a lot of personalized care that they are currently not adequately receiving. This initiative seeks to help in closing the gap between the current care that they are receiving, and the best possible care that they ought to receive. Insufficient care of patients with diabetes as well as other patients is likely to lead to premature mortality, preventable complications, and massive waste in healthcare in millions of dollars every year (Hayward et al., 2008).

The benefits of this program include improved health care delivery, a transition from guidelines of practice to performance, improved patient experience, commitment to clinical compliance, and promotion of adherence to improved quality standards (Damberg et al., 2010).

The budget items for the program will comprise the model, series collaborative and the selected programs to be initiated and hopefully put into implementation. There will be a need for resources to mobilize health care organizations for their participation in the program and funds for partners who will provide education on diabetes to the public.

The quality improvement initiative program will first take a disease management approach. This will involve the identification of patients who are diabetic, the establishment of a coordinated system for sharing information of patients who are enrolled alongside their service providers, the education and training of patients in self-management to avoid disease complications, encouraging doctors and all health care providers to employ evidence-based practice guidelines for managing the illness, and monitoring of interventions and outcomes over time to obtain an evaluation of the program. This approach is feasible for cost management and ultimate quality improvement in the clinical care of chronic illnesses such as diabetes (Stevens et al., 2010).

The second approach to the program will be self-management-based. Since diabetes is a condition whose management heavily relies on the patient’s management and monitoring outside the health care facilities, improving patient self-management is critical in the ultimate improvement of the quality of health care. The program will focus and emphasize patient education and modification of behavior. Health care providers will work with the patients within the health care systems and in the community to help them build confidence in managing the disease (Siminerio et al., 2008).

The third perspective of the program in seeking quality improvement will entail the combination of effort with institutes such as the Institute of Health Care Improvement. By joining hands with them, a platform for bringing together experts for quality improvement through collaboration will be set. The experts will comprise well-trained professionals from different health organizations to work as a team for a given period to achieve quality improvement in certain areas, in this case, with patients with diabetes. The outcomes of such combined efforts will be remarkable reductions in defects for instance long waiting time and reduced stays at the intensive care units, higher performance levels including access to primary care and an enhancement in blood sugar control, spectacular reduction in defects for example unnecessary hospitalization of the chronic condition and long waits for medications of pain (Damberg et al., 2010).

The fourth and final approach of the program will comprise diabetes detection for individuals who could be having diabetes yet are not aware that they have the disease. This is a community-based approach that will help in the identification of potential patients who do not know that they have the condition. This initiative will be intertwined with the provision of education on diabetes through partnering with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, CDC, and the National Diabetes Education Program (Stevens et al., 2010).

The basis of evaluating the program will rely heavily on the outcome. An administrative database would be a probable tool for users to get information regarding the quality of care during the running of the program (Damberg et al., 2010).

Conclusion

This program intends to facilitate the improvement of quality in health care service delivery to diabetes patients. Diabetes is a serious chronic condition that is on the rise in society at the moment. With its rising prevalence and long-term complications, improved quality health care is vital for managing and treating the condition where possible. With improved quality of health care, the condition will realize better management and ultimately better health of the suffering masses in the society.

References

Damberg, C., Shortell, S., Raube, K., Gillies, R., Rittenhouse, D., McCurdy, R., Casalino, L., Adams, J. (2010). Relationship between quality improvement processes and clinical performance. The American Journal of Managed Care, 16 (8), 601-6.

Hayward, R., Hofer, T., Kerr, E., & Krein, S. (2008). Quality improvement initiatives: issues in moving from diabetes guidelines to policy. Diabetes Care, 27, 54-60.

Siminerio, L., Ruppert, K., Emerson, S., Solano, F. & Piatt, G. (2008). Delivering Diabetes Self-Management Education (DSME) in Primary Care: The Pittsburgh Regional Initiative for Diabetes Education (PRIDE). Disease Management & Health Outcomes, 16 (4): 267-272.

Stevens, D., Bowen, J., Johnson, J., Woods, D., Provost, L., Holman, H., Sixta, C., Wagner, E. (2010). A multi-institutional quality improvement initiative to transform education for chronic illness care in resident continuity practices. Journal of General Internal Medicine, 25, 574-80.

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