This study evaluates whether training health care teams in continuous quality improvement methods results in improvements in the care of and outcomes for patients. Nine of the 25 teams who participated in the study were successful in improving the care/outcomes for patients. Successful teams were more effective at problem solving, engaged in more functional group interactions, and were more likely to have physician participation.
Because of growing resources devoted to individuals requiring community care for leg ulcers, the authority responsible for home care in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, established and evaluated a demonstration leg ulcer service. In an effort to provide current and evidence-based care, existing leg ulcer clinical practice guidelines were identified and appraised for quality and suitability to the new service.
The Practice Guideline Evaluation and Adaptation Cycle guided development of a local protocol for leg ulcer care, which included: (1) systematically searching for practice guidelines, (2) appraising the quality of identified guidelines using a validated guideline appraisal instrument, (3) conducting a content analysis of guideline recommendations, (4) selecting recommendations to include in the local protocol, and (5) obtaining practitioner and external expert feedback on the proposed protocol. Updating the protocol followed a similar process.
Of 19 identified leg ulcer practice guidelines, 14 were not evaluated because they did not meet the criteria (ie, treatment-focused guidelines, written in English and developed after 1998). Of the 5 remaining guidelines, 3 were fairly well developed and made similar recommendations. The level of evidence supporting specific recommendations ranged from randomized clinical trial evidence to expert opinion. By comparing the methodologic quality and content of the guidelines, the Task Force reached consensus regarding recommendations appropriate for local application. Two additional guidelines were subsequently identified and incorporated into the local protocol during a scheduled update.
Local adaptation of international and national guidelines is feasible following facilitation of the Practice Guidelines Evaluation and Adaptation Cycle.
Placement of the defibrillation electrodes affects the transmyocardial current and thus the success of a defibrillation attempt. In the international guidelines 2000, the placement of the apical electrode was changed more laterally to the mid-axillary line. Finnish national guidelines, based on the international guidelines, were published in 2002.
The purpose of this study was to determine to what extent health care professionals adhere to the new guidelines when positioning the electrodes.
Professionals were recruited from emergency medical services, university hospitals and primary care. Not revealing the purpose of the test, participants were asked to place self-adhesive electrodes on a manikin as they would do in the resuscitation situation and to answer a questionnaire about resuscitation training and familiarity with the guidelines. The distance of electrodes from the recommended position was measured in horizontal and vertical planes.
One-hundred and thirty six professionals participated in the study, and only 25.4% (95% CI 18.5-32.9) of them placed both electrodes within 5 cm from the recommended position. The majority of the participants placed the apical electrode too anteriorly. Of the participants, 36.0% were not aware of the new guidelines. Awareness of the guidelines did not increase the accuracy in electrode placement.
The publication of the national evidence based resuscitation guidelines did not seem to have influenced the practice of placement of the defibrillation electrodes to any major extent. The correct placement of the electrodes needs be emphasized more in the resuscitation training.
The aim was to describe quality of care from a patient perspective among adolescents receiving orthodontic treatment and to assess the relationship between quality of care and outcome-related aspects. The research design was cross-sectional. The sample consisted of 151 young people (mean age 17.1 years, SD: 2.2; 53% girls and 47% boys) receiving orthodontic treatment in the Stockholm region in Sweden (response rate 75%). Data were collected using the Quality from the Patient's Perspective questionnaire. The highest quality of care perceptions were noted on items dealing with receiving the best possible orthodontic treatment and being treated with respect. Less favourable perceptions of the quality of care were found regarding the opportunity to participate in the decisions related to the orthodontic treatment. In order to improve the quality of care a more active involvement of these patients in the decision-making process is suggested. The item 'I received the best possible orthodontic treatment' noted the highest subjective importance rating. The youngest participants reported the most favourable scores and the oldest the least. The majority (74%) reported that they were 'completely satisfied' with the result of the orthodontic treatment. However, 52% claimed that they had not followed all of the advice obtained during the treatment period, and 29% indicated some or more hesitation about attending the same dentist for future treatment.
Social accountability in healthcare requires physicians and medical institutions to direct their research, services and education activities to adequately address health inequities. The need for greater social accountability has been addressed in numerous national and international healthcare reviews of health disparities and medical education.
The aim of this work is to better understand how to identify underserved populations and address their specific needs and also to provide physicians and medical institutions with a means by which to cultivate social accountability.
The authors reviewed existing literature and prominent models focusing on social accountability, as well as medical education frameworks, and identified the need to engage underserved stakeholders and incorporate education that includes knowledge translation and reciprocity. The AIDER model was developed to satisfy the need in medical education and practice that is not explicitly addressed in previous models.
The AIDER model (Assess, Inquire, Deliver, Educate, Respond) is a continuous monitoring process that explicitly incorporates reciprocal education and continuous collaboration with underserved stakeholders.
This model is an incremental step forward in helping physicians and medical institutions foster a culture of social accountability both in individual practice and throughout the continuum of medical education.
The Alberta Cardiac Access Collaborative (ACAC) is a joint initiative of Alberta's health system to improve access to adult cardiac services across the patient journey. ACAC has created new care delivery models and implemented best practices across Alberta in four streams across the continuum: heart attack, patient navigation, heart failure and arrhythmia. Emergency medical providers, nurses, primary care physicians, hospitals, cardiac specialists and clinicians are all working together to integrate services, bridge jurisdictions and geography with one aim--improving the patient journey for adults in need of cardiac care.
Alberta's integrated approach to chronic disease management programming embraces client-centred care, supports self-management and facilitates care across the continuum. This paper presents strategies implemented through collaboration with primary care to improve care of individuals with chronic conditions, evaluation evidence supporting success and lessons learned from the Alberta perspective.