Part 5: Implementing a QI Plan
How Do I Implement a QI Plan?
The PDSA cycle discussed earlier can also be used as an implementation and evaluation method. Below are the four basic steps that can be followed while implementing a QI plan.
- Plan - Develop the QI plan based on the organization’s priorities, mission and goals, population & services provided, external requirements (HRSA, accreditation), measures, etc.
- Do - Implement the QI plan and use it as a roadmap for implementing an integrated quality program system-wide. Identify and document problems and unexpected observations that you came across while implementing the plan.
- Study - Evaluate the QI plan and address the following questions: Did you do what you said you were going to do? Why? Why not? What were the results? How can next year be better? What modifications should be made?
- Act on the lessons learned to revise the QI plan for the next year. Monitor the plan regularly to determine whether the plan remains successful over time. Evaluate the QI plan annually.
Successful implementation of QI in an organization requires an infrastructure that supports ongoing QI activities:
- Review and update the QI plan yearly;
- Monitor the QI plan and evaluate its effectiveness;
- Prioritize quality goals and projects so that key areas are addressed;
- Get commitment from leadership and senior management staff to support the program, allocate resources, and celebrate its successes;
- Get input from staff and consumers/patients;
- Communicate results to relevant individuals and groups (regular feedback regarding improvement projects is critical to success in sustaining improvements over time);
- Provide education and training to all levels of staff, including senior leadership regarding QI, tools, and techniques for continuous improvement.
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