Hospital Quality

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HOSPITAL QUALITY: INGREDIENTS FOR SUCCESS— OVERVIEW AND LESSONS LEARNED Jack A. Meyer, Sharon Silow-Carroll, Todd Kutyla, Larry S. Stepnick, and Lise S. Rybowski July 2004

ABSTRACT: Hospitals across the country are searching for ways to improve quality of care and promote effective quality improvement strategies. This research study, by members of the economic and social research institute, identifies and describes the key factors that contributed to the success of four high-performing hospitals across the country. Essential elements of a successful strategy, according to the study, include developing the right culture, attracting and retaining the right people, devising and updating the right in-house processes, and giving staff the right tools to do the job. External influences, such as local market competition, and public or private health quality initiatives and standards also have an impact. Through information gleaned from site visits and in-depth interviews with these high-performing hospitals, the study assesses quality drivers, internal processes, and challenges, and offers guidance and actions steps to help hospitals move in the right direction.

Support for this research was provided by The Commonwealth Fund. The views presented here are those of the authors and should not be attributed to The Commonwealth Fund or its directors, officers, or staff. Additional copies or this (#761) and other Commonwealth Fund publications are available online at www.cwmf.org. To learn more about new Fund publications when they appear, visit the Fund’s website and register to receive e-mail alerts.

CONTENTS Acknowledgments .......................................................................................................... iv About the Economic and Social Research Institute ......................................................... iv About the Authors .................................................................................................... iv About The Severyn Group .............................................................................................. v About the Authors ..................................................................................................... v Executive Summary........................................................................................................ vi Introduction .................................................................................................................... 1 Background ..................................................................................................................... 1 Methodology................................................................................................................... 3 Data Analysis.............................................................................................................. 3 Case Studies............................................................................................................... 5 Telephone Interviews ................................................................................................ 6 Findings: Key Elements Producing High-Quality Hospital Care and Successful Quality Improvement ............................................................................... 6 The Right Culture................................................................................................... 10 The Right People .................................................................................................... 13 The Right Processes ................................................................................................ 15 The Right Tools...................................................................................................... 21 External Forces and Resources ................................................................................. 25 Action Steps for Hospitals...
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