The annual Quality Improvement healthcare plan guides Canadian Health Centres in their efforts to deliver the top quality of services to their clients.
How to improve healthcare quality
Here are the key steps to be taken in order to improve quality healthcare in Canada:
1. Governments must:
- Develop a strategic plan for health improvement that includes coordination and collaboration mechanisms between ministries to support innovation.
- Develop a regulatory framework for planning programs for continuous improvement of the quality of care based on evidence-based medicine data.
- Provide financial, human and material resources to improve the quality of care.
- Include QM methodology and patient safety issues in the training programs for doctors, nurses and specialists in allied medical professions.
- Use appropriate mechanisms to coordinate actions on structural, financial and communication issues with international donor partners.
- Create mechanisms for targeted advocacy and reporting, as well as transparent reporting systems to improve the quality of health care for the population.
- Develop a common terminology, implementation program and reporting format for quality improvement activities in collaboration with non-governmental organizations, technical assistance organizations and donor partners.
2. Health policy-makers must:
- Provide guidance and propose directions for all countries to integrate quality-oriented initiatives into care systems (as an integral part of them) in order to increase the life expectancy and improve the quality of life of the population.
- Support QM-based interventions to implement evidence-based, high-impact, cost-effective and patient-centered approaches to bridge the gap between scientific knowledge and practice.
- Encourage leaders at the international and national levels to take concrete steps to popularize the application of QM approaches in countries experiencing difficulties in achieving the UN Millennium Development Goals.
- Urge all countries to take responsibility for integrating QM theory and culture into all new and ongoing health programs around the world.
3. Communities must:
- Take an active part in quality improvement efforts at all levels, participate in information analysis, planning, implementation and quality assessment of health services.
- Know and support international and local laws in order to improve the quality of health care. Monitor the government’s implementation of international and domestic laws and programs aimed at improving the quality of medical care.
- Support resource mobilization activities to improve the quality of care, as well as more global initiatives to improve quality.
- Achieve increased responsibility for family health through health education, promotion of a healthy lifestyle, prevention and timely access to medical care.
4. Donor partners must:
- Align their approaches to QM, from concept to assessment, based on quality improvement principles.
- Develop a common terminology, implementation program and reporting format for quality improvement activities in collaboration with nongovernmental organizations, technical assistance organizations and government representatives.
- Apply these common approaches based on specific needs at local, regional and global levels.
- Ensure that these unified approaches meet the needs and expectations of communities.
- Build leadership capacity at all levels.
- Apply quality improvement approaches to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of health care.
- Engage civil society and communities in improvement activities.
- Start with the use of evidence-based approaches and continue to improve these approaches based on the results obtained.
- Provide all healthcare professionals with the necessary training, tools and incentives to improve the quality of healthcare.
5. All technical assistance organizations must:
- Support government strategies to improve quality.
- Develop a common terminology, implementation program and reporting format for quality improvement activities, in collaboration with donor partners and government representatives.
- Widely disseminate models, tools and results to all stakeholders for mutual learning.
- When developing projects, take into account the following characteristics: sustainability, real interest of the country, availability of well-established state systems for collecting and processing data, opportunities for expanding activities and high efficiency.
- Ensure proper evaluation of quality improvement activities.
- Develop the capacity of countries for broad involvement in QM activities through vocational education and subsequent advanced training of medical workers. – Provide evidence of the effectiveness of QM methods and the possibilities of their application in the conditions of other countries.
- Bring QC programs in line with the country’s needs for adherence to the principles of equality in the provision of health care.
6. Healthcare professionals, managers, allied professionals and educators must:
- Actively participate in the process of improving the care provided.
- Taking into account the cultural characteristics of the country and striving to make services even more focused on the needs of the patient and his family, work to improve results by adhering to standards of care based on evidence-based medicine and using QC methods.
- Document QM activities in the field in order to generalize and disseminate new knowledge.
- Incorporate QM methodology into education and training for all healthcare professionals at all levels.
- Train and educate future leaders so that quality improvement becomes part of the health culture.
7. Patients and patient groups must:
- Participate in the decision-making process for care, including during visits to health care facilities.
- Develop a clearer understanding of their rights and responsibilities in receiving better services, as well as develop a sense of respect for the rights of other patients and healthcare professionals.
- Make the most of medical services and develop a sense of responsibility for the entire health care system and its infrastructure.
- Receive complete information about your health status and feel confident in informing your healthcare professional about all the potential risks associated with the care you receive.
- Form knowledge and develop skills for competent self-control of their health problems, lead a healthy lifestyle and maintain safe living conditions.