Quality Improvement (QI) is a continuous process that healthcare teams can use to ensure that high quality healthcare is more consistently delivered to all people. Healthcare teams use one of several techniques, such as “Plan, Do, Study, Act” to focus on a component of healthcare delivery and develop a plan for improving. They might look at the setting where healthcare is delivered, the processes used in its delivery, or patient outcomes.
The goal of the QI process is to make changes to how care is delivered. These changes can improve the health of groups, or populations, of patients rather than focusing on the health of a single individual. Changes can be small, making a form simpler. Changes could also be large, like offering walk-in blood pressure checks without a co-pay.
Using data is an important part of the QI process. The first step of any QI process is using data to identify an issue or opportunity for improvement. Data is also important for making sure that a change was actually an improvement.
The Utah Department of Health is supporting quality improvement initiatives through: