Taking patients' voices into account within quality systems: a comparative study

Taking patients' voices into account within quality systems: a comparative study Purpose – This study aims to explore whether and how patient voices had been taken into account within quality management systems in Hospital A in Britain and Hospital B in Taiwan. Design/methodology/approach – The two hospitals were purposefully selected and the data were collected over six months, via documents, interviews, and a semi‐structured questionnaire. A mixed method strategy within an overall qualitative framework (i.e. managerial‐operational‐technical) was used to make comparisons between them. Findings – A number of strategies were developed by both Hospital A and Hospital B to take patients' voice into account within quality systems. In an attempt to improve quality standards of services, both hospitals used patient satisfaction surveys relating to specific services to understand patients' opinions about care in outpatient services, inpatient services, or emergency services. They also set up patient suggestion boxes and managed complaints data to understand what patients needed and wanted. Originality/value – There is very limited literature related to the comparison of quality systems. In particular, this study explores the mechanisms to take patients' voices into account within quality systems. The most important distinction between the two hospitals is that in Hospital A, complaints are managed by a quality manager, while in Hospital B the Social Work Department (SWD) is responsible for dealing with patient complaints. In practice, it is more effective for quality officers to take care of complaints management than social workers, in terms of using complaints to improve quality. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png International Journal of Health Care Quality Assurance Emerald Publishing

Taking patients' voices into account within quality systems: a comparative study

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2009 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
0952-6862
DOI
10.1108/09526860910953557
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – This study aims to explore whether and how patient voices had been taken into account within quality management systems in Hospital A in Britain and Hospital B in Taiwan. Design/methodology/approach – The two hospitals were purposefully selected and the data were collected over six months, via documents, interviews, and a semi‐structured questionnaire. A mixed method strategy within an overall qualitative framework (i.e. managerial‐operational‐technical) was used to make comparisons between them. Findings – A number of strategies were developed by both Hospital A and Hospital B to take patients' voice into account within quality systems. In an attempt to improve quality standards of services, both hospitals used patient satisfaction surveys relating to specific services to understand patients' opinions about care in outpatient services, inpatient services, or emergency services. They also set up patient suggestion boxes and managed complaints data to understand what patients needed and wanted. Originality/value – There is very limited literature related to the comparison of quality systems. In particular, this study explores the mechanisms to take patients' voices into account within quality systems. The most important distinction between the two hospitals is that in Hospital A, complaints are managed by a quality manager, while in Hospital B the Social Work Department (SWD) is responsible for dealing with patient complaints. In practice, it is more effective for quality officers to take care of complaints management than social workers, in terms of using complaints to improve quality.

Journal

International Journal of Health Care Quality AssuranceEmerald Publishing

Published: May 1, 2009

Keywords: Quality systems; Patients; Hospital management; United Kingdom; Taiwan

References

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