Sample records for quality improvement initiative

  1. Improving the Quality of Freeze Dried Rice: Initial Evaluations (United States)


    UNCLASSIFIED UNCLASSIFIED Improving the Quality of Freeze Dried Rice: Initial Evaluations Lan Bui and Ross Coad Land ...RELEASE LIMITATION Approved for public release ` UNCLASSIFIED UNCLASSIFIED Published by Land Division DSTO...techniques and final characteristics. The people of India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Burma and Thailand generally prefer a cooked rice

  2. Efficiency Improvement and Quality Initiatives Application in Financial Institutions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    MSc. Ajtene Avdullahi


    Full Text Available Financial institutions in today’s economy have no longer the luxury to improve profit simply by increasing revenue. These firms, due to the significant measuring reductions in the financial services industry needed to improve operational efficiencies and merely support existing processes with fewer resources. This paper explains the benefits of Lean, Six Sigma, Total Quality Management and Lean Six Sigma that have improved organization's performance, by cutting costs and waste, improving their products or services, increasing profitability as well as enhancing customer satisfaction. The applicability of quality management practices in financial institutions in Kosovo is presented and also their efficiency and effectiveness. By analyzing data from Raiffeisen Bank Kosovo, this paper highlights the benefits of Individual and Micro companies customer segment as the result of organizational change and successful application of quality initiatives from financial institutions in Kosovo.

  3. Nursing Home Medication Reconciliation: A Quality Improvement Initiative. (United States)

    Tong, Monica; Oh, Hye Young; Thomas, Jennifer; Patel, Sheila; Hardesty, Jennifer L; Brandt, Nicole J


    The current quality improvement initiative evaluated the medication reconciliation process within select nursing homes in Washington, DC. The identification of common types of medication discrepancies through monthly retrospective chart reviews of newly admitted patients in two different nursing homes were described. The use of high-risk medications, namely antidiabetic, anticoagulant, and opioid agents, was also recorded. A standardized spreadsheet tool based on multiple medication reconciliation implementation tool kits was created to record the information. The five most common medication discrepancies were incorrect indication (21%), no monitoring parameters (17%), medication name omitted (11%), incorrect dose (10%), and incorrect frequency (8%). Antidiabetic agents in both sites were the most used high-risk medication. This initiative highlights that medication discrepancies on admission are common in nursing homes and may be clinically impactful. More attention needs to be given to work flow processes to improve medication reconciliation considering the increased risk for adverse drug events and hospitalizations. [Journal of Gerontological Nursing and Mental Health Services, 43(4), 9-14.].

  4. Efficiency Improvement and Quality Initiatives Application in Financial Institutions


    MSc. Ajtene Avdullahi; MSc. Vjosa Fejza


    Financial institutions in today’s economy have no longer the luxury to improve profit simply by increasing revenue. These firms, due to the significant measuring reductions in the financial services industry needed to improve operational efficiencies and merely support existing processes with fewer resources. This paper explains the benefits of Lean, Six Sigma, Total Quality Management and Lean Six Sigma that have improved organization's performance, by cutting costs and waste, improving thei...

  5. Evaluation and measurement for improvement in service-level quality improvement initiatives. (United States)

    Russell, Nicholas C C; Wallace, Louise M; Ketley, Diane


    The National Health Service (NHS) in England, as with other health services worldwide, currently faces the need to reduce costs and to improve the quality of patient care. Evidence gathered through effective and appropriate measurement and evaluation, is essential to achieving this. Through interviews with service improvement managers and analysis of comments in a seminar of NHS staff involved in health service improvement, we found a lack of understanding regarding the definition and methodology of both measurement and evaluation, which decreases the likelihood that NHS staff will be competent to commission or provide these skills. In addition, we highlight the importance of managers assessing their organizations' 'readiness' to undergo change before embarking on a quality improvement (QI) initiative, to ensure that the initiative's impact can be adequately judged. We provide definitions of measurement for improvement and of evaluation, and propose a comparative framework from which to gauge an appropriate approach. Examples of two large-scale QI initiatives are also given, along with descriptions of some of their problems and solutions, to illustrate the use of the framework. We recommend that health service managers use the framework to determine the most appropriate approach to evaluation and measurement for improvement for their context, to ensure that their decisions are evidence based.

  6. Improving inpatient postnatal services: midwives views and perspectives of engagement in a quality improvement initiative

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    Wray Julie


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Despite major policy initiatives in the United Kingdom to enhance women's experiences of maternity care, improving in-patient postnatal care remains a low priority, although it is an aspect of care consistently rated as poor by women. As part of a systems and process approach to improving care at one maternity unit in the South of England, the views and perspectives of midwives responsible for implementing change were sought. Methods A Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI approach was adopted to support a systems and process change to in-patient care and care on transfer home in a large district general hospital with around 6000 births a year. The CQI approach included an initial assessment to identify where revisions to routine systems and processes were required, developing, implementing and evaluating revisions to the content and documentation of care in hospital and on transfer home, and training workshops for midwives and other maternity staff responsible for implementing changes. To assess midwifery views of the quality improvement process and their engagement with this, questionnaires were sent to those who had participated at the outset. Results Questionnaires were received from 68 (46% of the estimated 149 midwives eligible to complete the questionnaire. All midwives were aware of the revisions introduced, and two-thirds felt these were more appropriate to meet the women's physical and emotional health, information and support needs. Some midwives considered that the introduction of new maternal postnatal records increased their workload, mainly as a consequence of colleagues not completing documentation as required. Conclusions This was the first UK study to undertake a review of in-patient postnatal services. Involvement of midwives at the outset was essential to the success of the initiative. Midwives play a lead role in the planning and organisation of in-patient postnatal care and it was important to obtain their

  7. Quality initiatives: improving patient flow for a bone densitometry practice: results from a Mayo Clinic radiology quality initiative. (United States)

    Aakre, Kenneth T; Valley, Timothy B; O'Connor, Michael K


    Lean Six Sigma process improvement methodologies have been used in manufacturing for some time. However, Lean Six Sigma process improvement methodologies also are applicable to radiology as a way to identify opportunities for improvement in patient care delivery settings. A multidisciplinary team of physicians and staff conducted a 100-day quality improvement project with the guidance of a quality advisor. By using the framework of DMAIC (define, measure, analyze, improve, and control), time studies were performed for all aspects of patient and technologist involvement. From these studies, value stream maps for the current state and for the future were developed, and tests of change were implemented. Comprehensive value stream maps showed that before implementation of process changes, an average time of 20.95 minutes was required for completion of a bone densitometry study. Two process changes (ie, tests of change) were undertaken. First, the location for completion of a patient assessment form was moved from inside the imaging room to the waiting area, enabling patients to complete the form while waiting for the technologist. Second, the patient was instructed to sit in a waiting area immediately outside the imaging rooms, rather than in the main reception area, which is far removed from the imaging area. Realignment of these process steps, with reduced technologist travel distances, resulted in a 3-minute average decrease in the patient cycle time. This represented a 15% reduction in the initial patient cycle time with no change in staff or costs. Radiology process improvement projects can yield positive results despite small incremental changes.

  8. Science Teacher Education in Australia: Initiatives and Challenges to Improve the Quality of Teaching (United States)

    Treagust, David F.; Won, Mihye; Petersen, Jacinta; Wynne, Georgie


    In this article, we describe how teachers in the Australian school system are educated to teach science and the different qualifications that teachers need to enter the profession. The latest comparisons of Australian students in international science assessments have brought about various accountability measures to improve the quality of science teachers at all levels. We discuss the issues and implications of government initiatives in preservice and early career teacher education programs, such as the implementation of national science curriculum, the stricter entry requirements to teacher education programs, an alternative pathway to teaching and the measure of effectiveness of teacher education programs. The politicized discussion and initiatives to improve the quality of science teacher education in Australia are still unfolding as we write in 2014.

  9. Quality Improvement in the National Cancer Institute Community Cancer Centers Program: The Quality Oncology Practice Initiative Experience (United States)

    Siegel, Robert D.; Castro, Kathleen M.; Eisenstein, Jana; Stallings, Holley; Hegedus, Patricia D.; Bryant, Donna M.; Kadlubek, Pam J.; Clauser, Steven B.


    Purpose: The National Cancer Institute (NCI) Community Cancer Centers Program (NCCCP) began in 2007; it is a network of community-based hospitals funded by the NCI. Quality of care is an NCCCP priority, with participation in the American Society of Clinical Oncology Quality Oncology Practice Initiative (QOPI) playing a fundamental role in quality assessment and quality improvement (QI) projects. Using QOPI methodology, performance on quality measures was analyzed two times per year over a 3-year period to enhance our implementation of quality standards at NCCCP hospitals. Methods: A data-sharing agreement allowed individual-practice QOPI data to be electronically sent to the NCI. Aggregated data with the other NCCCP QOPI participants were presented to the network via Webinars. The NCCCP Quality of Care Subcommittee selected areas in which to focus subsequent QI efforts, and high-performing practices shared voluntarily their QI best practices with the network. Results: QOPI results were compiled semiannually between fall 2010 and fall 2013. The network concentrated on measures with a quality score of ≤ 0.75 and planned voluntary group-wide QI interventions. We identified 13 measures in which the NCCCP fell at or below the designated quality score in fall 2010. After implementing a variety of QI initiatives, the network registered improvements in all parameters except one (use of treatment summaries). Conclusion: Using the NCCCP as a paradigm, QOPI metrics provide a useful platform for group-wide measurement of quality performance. In addition, these measurements can be used to assess the effectiveness of QI initiatives. PMID:25538082

  10. The GDAHA hospital performance reports project: a successful community-based quality improvement initiative. (United States)

    Snow, Richard J; Engler, David; Krella, Joseph M


    During the past decade there has been increasing distribution of hospital performance information but few examples of how this information is affecting the quality of health care delivery. This article describes the methods of implementation and factors influencing a successful community-based quality improvement initiative in Dayton, Ohio, involving a collaborative of five competing hospitals in partnership with the business community and local and state hospital associations. The initiative contributed to a 36% reduction in acute myocardial infarction mortality over a 3-year period by changing reperfusion patterns in patients with ST segment elevated myocardial infarction. Identification of an opportunity gap, root cause analysis, and development of process measures used to facilitate health care provider change are summarized. The driving and restraining forces that have shaped this initiative from a report card to a quality improvement program are outlined and a list of five contributors to success are presented. These factors can serve as a basis for how other communities can benefit from this collaborative model.

  11. Pain Management in Long-Term Care Communities: A Quality Improvement Initiative (United States)

    Reid, M C; O’Neil, Kevin W.; Dancy, JaNeen; Berry, Carolyn A.; Stowell, Stephanie A.


    Pain is underrecognized and undertreated in the long-term care (LTC) setting. To improve the management of pain for LTC residents, the authors implemented a quality improvement (QI) initiative at one LTC facility. They conducted a needs assessment to identify areas for improvement and designed a 2-hour educational workshop for facility staff and local clinicians. Participants were asked to complete a survey before and after the workshop, which showed significant improvement in their knowledge of pain management and confidence in their ability to recognize and manage residents’ pain. To measure the effectiveness of the QI initiative, the authors performed a chart review at baseline and at 3 and 8 months after the workshop and evaluated relevant indicators of adequate pain assessment and management. The post-workshop chart reviews showed significant improvement in how consistently employees documented pain characteristics (ie, location, intensity, duration) in resident charts and in their use of targeted pain assessments for residents with cognitive dysfunction. The proportion of charts that included a documented plan for pain assessment was high at baseline and remained stable throughout the study. Overall, the findings suggest a QI initiative is an effective way to improve pain care practices in the LTC setting. PMID:25949232

  12. Paediatric early warning scores on a children's ward: a quality improvement initiative.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Ennis, Linda


    The aim of this quality improvement initiative was to incorporate a paediatric early warning score (PEWS) and track and trigger system in the routine care of children in an acute general children\\'s ward at a regional hospital in the Republic of Ireland. In the absence of a nationally recommended specific PEWS strategy, a local plan was developed. The experience of structuring and implementing the PEWS and track and trigger system is presented in this article. Data from the first year of use were collected to evaluate the clinical utility and effectiveness of this system. In the busy acute children\\'s service, the PEWS initiative was found to benefit processes of early detection, prompt referral and timely, appropriate management of children at potential risk of clinical deterioration. Nursing staff were empowered and supported to communicate concerns immediately and to seek rapid medical review, according to an agreed PEWS escalation plan. Outcomes were significantly improved.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shirshendu Roy


    Full Text Available The concept of quality improvement in industry has originated from the involvement of inspector which has become the most important part of manufacturing process or development activity. Over years, this initiative is migrated to various support functions of the industry. In this paper, emphasis has been given particularly in the areas related to support functions where improvement project s can be effectively done and hence organization wide impact is assessed. Two case studies are presented here in this context. The first study shows how smaller change in content structure and delivery met hod can drastically improve the training feedback and the second one demonstrates minimizing lead time to recruitment with a cost-effective process modification.

  14. The European Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy Quality Improvement Initiative: developing performance measures (United States)

    Senore, Carlo; Bisschops, Raf; Domagk, Dirk; Valori, Roland; Kaminski, Michal F.; Spada, Cristiano; Bretthauer, Michael; Bennett, Cathy; Bellisario, Cristina; Minozzi, Silvia; Hassan, Cesare; Rees, Colin; Dinis-Ribeiro, Mário; Hucl, Tomas; Ponchon, Thierry; Aabakken, Lars; Fockens, Paul


    The European Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ESGE) and United European Gastroenterology (UEG) have a vision to create a thriving community of endoscopy services across Europe, collaborating with each other to provide high quality, safe, accurate, patient-centered and accessible endoscopic care. Whilst the boundaries of what can be achieved by advanced endoscopy are continually expanding, we believe that one of the most fundamental steps to achieving our goal is to raise the quality of everyday endoscopy. The development of robust, consensus- and evidence-based key performance measures is the first step in this vision. ESGE and UEG have identified quality of endoscopy as a major priority. This paper explains the rationale behind the ESGE Quality Improvement Initiative and describes the processes that were followed. We recommend that all units develop mechanisms for audit and feedback of endoscopist and service performance using the ESGE performance measures that will be published in future issues of this journal over the next year. We urge all endoscopists and endoscopy services to prioritize quality and to ensure that these performance measures are implemented and monitored at a local level, so that we can provide the highest possible care for our patients. PMID:26966520

  15. Integrating risk management data in quality improvement initiatives within an academic neurosurgery department. (United States)

    McLaughlin, Nancy; Garrett, Matthew C; Emami, Leila; Foss, Sarah K; Klohn, Johanna L; Martin, Neil A


    OBJECT While malpractice litigation has had many negative impacts on health care delivery systems, information extracted from lawsuits could potentially guide toward venues to improve care. The authors present a comprehensive review of lawsuits within a tertiary academic neurosurgical department and report institutional and departmental strategies to mitigate liability by integrating risk management data with quality improvement initiatives. METHODS The Comprehensive Risk Intelligence Tool database was interrogated to extract claims/suits abstracts concerning neurosurgical cases that were closed from January 2008 to December 2012. Variables included demographics of the claimant, type of procedure performed (if any), claim description, insured information, case outcome, clinical summary, contributing factors and subfactors, amount incurred for indemnity and expenses, and independent expert opinion in regard to whether the standard of care was met. RESULTS During the study period, the Department of Neurosurgery received the most lawsuits of all surgical specialties (30 of 172), leading to a total incurred payment of $4,949,867. Of these lawsuits, 21 involved spinal pathologies and 9 cranial pathologies. The largest group of suits was from patients with challenging medical conditions who underwent uneventful surgeries and postoperative courses but filed lawsuits when they did not see the benefits for which they were hoping; 85% of these claims were withdrawn by the plaintiffs. The most commonly cited contributing factors included clinical judgment (20 of 30), technical skill (19 of 30), and communication (6 of 30). CONCLUSIONS While all medical and surgical subspecialties must deal with the issue of malpractice and liability, neurosurgery is most affected both in terms of the number of suits filed as well as monetary amounts awarded. To use the suits as learning tools for the faculty and residents and minimize the associated costs, quality initiatives addressing the

  16. Application of quality-improvement methods in a community practice: the Sandhills Pediatrics Asthma Initiative. (United States)

    Wroth, Thomas H; Boals, Joseph C


    leadership and support. The leaders of the practice saw beyond the usual metrics of patient visit counts and relative value units (RVUs) to embrace the concept of population health: the notion that practices are not only responsible for providing acute, episodic care in the office, but also for improving health outcomes in the community in which they serve. Other important factors included ensuring a basic agreement among providers on the need for improvement and frequent communication about the goals of the project. Although the champions of the project tried to minimize formal meeting time, there was frequent informal communication between team members. In the future, there is a need to develop other approaches to stimulate these endeavors in community practices, such as "pay for performance" programs, continuing education credit, and tying maintenance of board certification to quality improvement initiatives.

  17. Quality Improvement Initiative in School-Based Health Centers across New Mexico (United States)

    Booker, John M.; Schluter, Janette A.; Carrillo, Kris; McGrath, Jane


    Background: Quality improvement principles have been applied extensively to health care organizations, but implementation of quality improvement methods in school-based health centers (SBHCs) remains in a developmental stage with demonstration projects under way in individual states and nationally. Rural areas, such as New Mexico, benefit from the…

  18. Interacting Patients: The construction of active patientship in quality improvement initiatives

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    F.D. Vennik (Femke)


    markdownabstractThe promotion of active patient participation in healthcare quality improvement projects is an important policy goal in the Netherlands and other Western countries. Healthcare quality improvement is no longer perceived to be an exclusive professional activity; patients, who may be ab

  19. Nursing Home Quality Initiative (United States)

    U.S. Department of Health & Human Services — This Nursing Home Quality Initiative (NHQI) website provides consumer and provider information regarding the quality of care in nursing homes. NHQI discusses quality...

  20. Quality Improvement Initiative to Decrease Variability of Emergency Physician Opioid Analgesic Prescribing

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    John H. Burton


    Full Text Available Introduction: Addressing pain is a crucial aspect of emergency medicine. Prescription opioids are commonly prescribed for moderate to severe pain in the emergency department (ED; unfortunately, prescribing practices are variable. High variability of opioid prescribing decisions suggests a lack of consensus and an opportunity to improve care. This quality improvement (QI initiative aimed to reduce variability in ED opioid analgesic prescribing. Methods: We evaluated the impact of a three-part QI initiative on ED opioid prescribing by physicians at seven sites. Stage 1: Retrospective baseline period (nine months. Stage 2: Physicians were informed that opioid prescribing information would be prospectively collected and feedback on their prescribing and that of the group would be shared at the end of the stage (three months. Stage 3: After physicians received their individual opioid prescribing data with blinded comparison to the group means (from Stage 2 they were informed that individual prescribing data would be unblinded and shared with the group after three months. The primary outcome was variability of the standard error of the mean and standard deviation of the opioid prescribing rate (defined as number of patients discharged with an opioid divided by total number of discharges for each provider. Secondary observations included mean quantity of pills per opioid prescription, and overall frequency of opioid prescribing. Results: The study group included 47 physicians with 149,884 ED patient encounters. The variability in prescribing decreased through each stage of the initiative as represented by the distributions for the opioid prescribing rate: Stage 1 mean 20%; Stage 2 mean 13% (46% reduction, p<0.01, and Stage 3 mean 8% (60% reduction, p<0.01. The mean quantity of pills prescribed per prescription was 16 pills in Stage 1, 14 pills in Stage 2 (18% reduction, p<0.01, and 13 pills in Stage 3 (18% reduction, p<0.01. The group mean

  1. Quality Initiatives - General Information (United States)

    U.S. Department of Health & Human Services — CMS has developed a standardized approach for the development of quality measures that it uses in its quality initiatives. Known as the Measures Management System...

  2. Nursing Home Quality Initiative (United States)

    U.S. Department of Health & Human Services — This Nursing Home Quality Initiative (NHQI) website provides consumer and provider information regarding the quality of care in nursing homes. NHQI discusses...

  3. Initial benzodiazepine use and improved health-related quality of life.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Hulten, Rolf; Teeuw, Bart; Bakker, Albert; Leufkens, Hubert G


    OBJECTIVE: The health-related quality of life (HRQOL) of initial benzodiazepine users was measured over time. Furthermore, benzodiazepine usage characteristics as determinants of change in mental and physical health status of the benzodiazepine users were examined. METHODS: In the only pharmacy of a

  4. Palm Beach County's Prime Time Initiative: Improving the Quality of After-School Programs (United States)

    Spielberger, Julie; Lockaby, Tracey


    This report covers the third year of Chapin Hall's process evaluation of the Prime Time Initiative of Palm Beach County, Florida, a system-building effort to strengthen the quality of after-school programs in the county. During the past two decades, the after-school field has expanded enormously, partly in response to increasing concern about…

  5. Costs and financing of improvements in the quality of maternal health services through the Bamako Initiative in Nigeria. (United States)

    Ogunbekun, I; Adeyi, O; Wouters, A; Morrow, R H


    This paper reports on a study to assess the quality of maternal health care in public health facilities in Nigeria and to identify the resource implications of making the necessary quality improvements. Drawing upon unifying themes from quality assurance, basic microeconomics and the Bamako Initiative, locally defined norms were used to estimate resource requirements for improving the quality of maternal health care. Wide gaps existed between what is required (the norm) and what was available in terms of fixed and variable resources required for the delivery of maternal health services in public facilities implementing the Bamako Initiative in the Local Government Areas studied. Given such constraints, it was highly unlikely that technically acceptable standards of care could be met without additional resource inputs to meet the norm. This is part of the cost of doing business and merits serious policy dialogue. Revenue generation from health services was poor and appeared to be more related to inadequate supply of essential drugs and consumables than to the use of uneconomic fee scales. It is likely that user fees will be necessary to supplement scarce government budgets, especially to fund the most critical variable inputs associated with quality improvements. However, any user fee system, especially one that raises fees to patients, will have to be accompanied by immediate and visible quality improvements. Without such quality improvements, cost recovery will result in even lower utilization and attempts to generate new revenues are unlikely to succeed.

  6. Science Teacher Education in Australia: Initiatives and Challenges to Improve the Quality of Teaching (United States)

    Treagust, David F.; Won, Mihye; Petersen, Jacinta; Wynne, Georgie


    In this article, we describe how teachers in the Australian school system are educated to teach science and the different qualifications that teachers need to enter the profession. The latest comparisons of Australian students in international science assessments have brought about various accountability measures to improve the quality of science…

  7. Money matters: exploiting the data from outcomes research for quality improvement initiatives. (United States)

    Impellizzeri, Franco M; Bizzini, Mario; Leunig, Michael; Maffiuletti, Nicola A; Mannion, Anne F


    In recent years, there has been an increase in studies that have sought to identify predictors of treatment outcome and to examine the efficacy of surgical and non-surgical treatments. In addition to the scientific advancement associated with these studies per se, the hospitals and clinics where the studies are conducted may gain indirect financial benefit from participating in such projects as a result of the prestige derived from corporate social responsibility, a reputational lever used to reward such institutions. It is known that there is a positive association between corporate social performance and corporate financial performance. However, in addition to this, the research findings and the research staff can constitute resources from which the provider can reap a more direct benefit, by means of their contribution to quality control and improvement. Poor quality is costly. Patient satisfaction increases the chances that the patient will be a promoter of the provider to friends and colleagues. As such, involvement of the research staff in the improvement of the quality of care can ultimately result in economic revenue for the provider. The most advanced methodologies for continuous quality improvement (e.g., six-sigma) are data-driven and use statistical tools similar to those utilized in the traditional research setting. Given that these methods rely on the application of the scientific process to quality improvement, researchers have the adequate skills and mind-set to embrace them and thereby contribute effectively to the quality team. The aim of this article is to demonstrate by means of real-life examples how to utilize the findings of outcome studies for quality management in a manner similar to that used in the business community. It also aims to stimulate research groups to better understand that, by adopting a different perspective, their studies can be an additional resource for the healthcare provider. The change in perspective should stimulate

  8. The Impact of 3D Data Quality on Improving GNSS Performance Using City Models Initial Simulations (United States)

    Ellul, C.; Adjrad, M.; Groves, P.


    There is an increasing demand for highly accurate positioning information in urban areas, to support applications such as people and vehicle tracking, real-time air quality detection and navigation. However systems such as GPS typically perform poorly in dense urban areas. A number of authors have made use of 3D city models to enhance accuracy, obtaining good results, but to date the influence of the quality of the 3D city model on these results has not been tested. This paper addresses the following question: how does the quality, and in particular the variation in height, level of generalization and completeness and currency of a 3D dataset, impact the results obtained for the preliminary calculations in a process known as Shadow Matching, which takes into account not only where satellite signals are visible on the street but also where they are predicted to be absent. We describe initial simulations to address this issue, examining the variation in elevation angle - i.e. the angle above which the satellite is visible, for three 3D city models in a test area in London, and note that even within one dataset using different available height values could cause a difference in elevation angle of up to 29°. Missing or extra buildings result in an elevation variation of around 85°. Variations such as these can significantly influence the predicted satellite visibility which will then not correspond to that experienced on the ground, reducing the accuracy of the resulting Shadow Matching process.

  9. A crisis management quality improvement initiative in a children's psychiatric hospital: design, implementation, and outcome. (United States)

    Paccione-Dyszlewski, Margaret R; Conelea, Christine A; Heisler, Walter C; Vilardi, Jodie C; Sachs, Henry T


    Behavioral crisis management, including the use of seclusion and restraint, is the most high risk process in the psychiatric care of children and adolescents. The authors describe hospital-wide programmatic changes implemented at a children's psychiatric hospital that aimed to improve the quality of crisis management services. Pre/post quantitative and qualitative data suggest reduced restraint and seclusion use, reduced patient and staff injury related to crisis management, and increased patient satisfaction during the post-program period. Factors deemed beneficial in program implementation are discussed.

  10. Twelve tips for turning quality assurance data into undergraduate teaching awards: A quality improvement and student engagement initiative. (United States)

    Newton, Kate; Lewis, Helen; Pugh, Mark; Paladugu, Madhavi; Woywodt, Alexander


    Data on teaching awards in undergraduate medical education are sparse. The benefits of an awards system may seem obvious at first glance. However, there are also potential problems relating to fairness, avoidance of bias, and alignment of the awards system with a wider strategy for quality improvement and curriculum development. Here, we report five- year single center experience with establishing undergraduate teaching awards in a large academic teaching hospital. Due to lack of additional funding we based our awards not on peer review but mainly on existing and very comprehensive quality assurance (QA) data. Our 12 tips describe practical points but also pitfalls with awards categories and criteria, advertising and disseminating the awards, the actual awards ceremony and finally embedding the awards in the hospital's wider strategy. To be truly successful, teaching awards and prizes need to be carefully considered, designed and aligned with a wider institutional strategy of rewarding enthusiastic educators.

  11. Quality initiatives: lean approach to improving performance and efficiency in a radiology department. (United States)

    Kruskal, Jonathan B; Reedy, Allen; Pascal, Laurie; Rosen, Max P; Boiselle, Phillip M


    Many hospital radiology departments are adopting "lean" methods developed in automobile manufacturing to improve operational efficiency, eliminate waste, and optimize the value of their services. The lean approach, which emphasizes process analysis, has particular relevance to radiology departments, which depend on a smooth flow of patients and uninterrupted equipment function for efficient operation. However, the application of lean methods to isolated problems is not likely to improve overall efficiency or to produce a sustained improvement. Instead, the authors recommend a gradual but continuous and comprehensive "lean transformation" of work philosophy and workplace culture. Fundamental principles that must consistently be put into action to achieve such a transformation include equal involvement of and equal respect for all staff members, elimination of waste, standardization of work processes, improvement of flow in all processes, use of visual cues to communicate and inform, and use of specific tools to perform targeted data collection and analysis and to implement and guide change. Many categories of lean tools are available to facilitate these tasks: value stream mapping for visualizing the current state of a process and identifying activities that add no value; root cause analysis for determining the fundamental cause of a problem; team charters for planning, guiding, and communicating about change in a specific process; management dashboards for monitoring real-time developments; and a balanced scorecard for strategic oversight and planning in the areas of finance, customer service, internal operations, and staff development.

  12. Quality initiatives: Key performance indicators for measuring and improving radiology department performance. (United States)

    Abujudeh, Hani H; Kaewlai, Rathachai; Asfaw, Benjamin A; Thrall, James H


    Key performance indicators (KPIs) are financial and nonfinancial measures that are used to define and evaluate the success of an organization. KPIs differ, depending on the nature of the organization and the organizational strategy; they are devised to help evaluate the progress of an organization toward achieving its long-term goals and fulfilling its vision. In healthcare organizations, performance assessment is especially critical for the development of best practices that can lead to improved outcomes in patient care, and KPIs have been incorporated into many healthcare management systems. In the future, radiology-specific KPIs such as those in use at the authors' institution may help provide a framework for measuring performance in radiology practice.

  13. Continuous practice quality improvement initiative for communication of critical findings in neuroradiology. (United States)

    Babiarz, Lukasz S; Lewin, Jonathan S; Yousem, David M


    The authors examined faculty's compliance with a hospital-approved neuroradiology critical findings (CFs) policy, which requires urgent verbal communication with the clinical team when 17 specific critical pathologies are identified. During June 2011 to July 2013, 50 random neuroradiology reports were sampled monthly for the presence of CFs and appropriate action. Faculty were provided ongoing feedback, and at the end of 2 years, the medical records for cases with noncommunicated CFs were reviewed to identify potential adverse outcomes. Of the 1200 reviewed reports, 195 (16.3%) had and 1005 (83.8%) did not have a CF. A total of 176 of 195 (90.3%) cases with CFs were communicated, and compliance increased from 77.4% to 85.6% (P = .027) since the monthly sampling was instituted; 1 of 19 (5.3%) noncommunicated CFs resulted in a potential adverse event. The ongoing monthly feedback resulted in improved faculty compliance with the CF policy. However, a small number of cases with CFs are still not being communicated.

  14. The preclinical data forum network: A new ECNP initiative to improve data quality and robustness for (preclinical) neuroscience. (United States)

    Steckler, Thomas; Brose, Katja; Haas, Magali; Kas, Martien J; Koustova, Elena; Bespalov, Anton


    Current limitations impeding on data reproducibility are often poor statistical design, underpowered studies, lack of robust data, lack of methodological detail, biased reporting and lack of open data sharing, coupled with wrong research incentives. To improve data reproducibility, robustness and quality for brain disease research, a Preclinical Data Forum Network was formed under the umbrella of the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology (ECNP). The goal of this network, members of which met for the first time in October 2014, is to establish a forum to collaborate in precompetitive space, to exchange and develop best practices, and to bring together the members from academia, pharmaceutical industry, publishers, journal editors, funding organizations, public/private partnerships and non-profit advocacy organizations. To address the most pertinent issues identified by the Network, it was decided to establish a data sharing platform that allows open exchange of information in the area of preclinical neuroscience and to develop an educational scientific program. It is also planned to reach out to other organizations to align initiatives to enhance efficiency, and to initiate activities to improve the clinical relevance of preclinical data. Those Network activities should contribute to scientific rigor and lead to robust and relevant translational data. Here we provide a synopsis of the proceedings from the inaugural meeting.

  15. Quality initiative at ESO (United States)

    Rupprecht, Gero; Arsenault, Robin; Hanuschik, Reinhard; Kraus, Maximilian; Sivera, Paola; Tromp, Arnout; Verzichelli, Gianluca


    An initiative is under way at ESO Headquarters to optimise operations, in particular in the engineering, technical and associated management areas. A systematic approach to strengthen the operating processes is in preparation, starting with a mapping of the extensive existing process network. Processes identified as sufficiently important and complex to merit an in-depth analysis will be properly specified and their implementation optimised to strike a sensible balance between organisational overhead (documentation) and efficiency. By applying methods and tools tried and tested in industry we expect to achieve a more unified approach to address recurrent tasks. This will enable staff to concentrate more on new challenges and improvement and avoid spending effort on issues already resolved in the past.

  16. An investigation of quality improvement initiatives in decreasing the rate of avoidable 30-day, skilled nursing facility-to-hospital readmissions: a systematic review (United States)

    Mileski, Michael; Topinka, Joseph Baar; Lee, Kimberly; Brooks, Matthew; McNeil, Christopher; Jackson, Jenna


    Objectives The main objective was to investigate the applicability and effectiveness of quality improvement initiatives in decreasing the rate of avoidable 30-day, skilled nursing facility (SNF)-to-hospital readmissions. Problem The rate of rehospitalizations from SNF within 30 days of original discharge has increased within the last decade. Setting The research team participants conducted a literature review via Cumulative Index of Nursing and Allied Health Literature and PubMed to collect data about quality improvement implemented in SNFs. Results The most common facilitator was the incorporation of specialized staff. The most cited barriers were quality improvement tracking and implementation. Conclusion These strategy examples can be useful to acute care hospitals attempting to lower bounce back from subacute care providers and long-term care facilities seeking quality improvement initiatives to reduce hospital readmissions. PMID:28182162

  17. Continuous quality improvement programs provide new opportunities to drive value innovation initiatives in hospital-based radiology practices. (United States)

    Steele, Joseph R; Schomer, Don F


    Imaging services constitute a huge portion of the of the total dollar investment within the health care enterprise. Accordingly, this generates competition among medical specialties organized along service lines for their pieces of the pie and increased scrutiny from third-party payers and government regulators. These market and political forces create challenge and opportunity for a hospital-based radiology practice. Clearly, change that creates or builds greater value for patients also creates sustainable competitive advantage for a radiology practice. The somewhat amorphous concept of quality constitutes a significant value driver for innovation in this scenario. Quality initiatives and programs seek to define and manage this amorphous concept and provide tools for a radiology practice to create or build more value. Leadership and the early adoption of these inevitable programs by a radiology practice strengthens relationships with hospital partners and slows the attrition of imaging service lines to competitors.

  18. An investigation of quality improvement initiatives in decreasing the rate of avoidable 30-day, skilled nursing facility-to-hospital readmissions: a systematic review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mileski M


    Full Text Available Michael Mileski, Joseph Baar Topinka, Kimberly Lee, Matthew Brooks, Christopher McNeil, Jenna Jackson School of Health Administration, Texas State University, San Marcos, TX, USA Objectives: The main objective was to investigate the applicability and effectiveness of quality improvement initiatives in decreasing the rate of avoidable 30-day, skilled nursing facility (SNF-to-hospital readmissions. Problem: The rate of rehospitalizations from SNF within 30 days of original discharge has increased within the last decade. Setting: The research team participants conducted a literature review via Cumulative Index of Nursing and Allied Health Literature and PubMed to collect data about quality improvement implemented in SNFs. Results: The most common facilitator was the incorporation of specialized staff. The most cited barriers were quality improvement tracking and implementation. Conclusion: These strategy examples can be useful to acute care hospitals attempting to lower bounce back from subacute care providers and long-term care facilities seeking quality improvement initiatives to reduce hospital readmissions. Keywords: readmissions, skilled nursing, quality improvement, hospital, finance, Medicare, transfers

  19. End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) Quality Initiative (United States)

    U.S. Department of Health & Human Services — The End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) Quality Initiative promotes ongoing CMS strategies to improve the quality of care provided to ESRD patients. This initiative...

  20. Use of CAHPS® patient experience survey data as part of a patient-centered medical home quality improvement initiative

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Quigley DD


    Full Text Available Denise D Quigley,1 Peter J Mendel,1 Zachary S Predmore,2 Alex Y Chen,3 Ron D Hays41RAND Corporation, Santa Monica, CA, 2RAND Corporation, Boston, MA, 3AltaMed Health Services Corporation, 4Division of General Internal Medicine and Health Services Research, UCLA, Los Angeles, CA, USAObjective: To describe how practice leaders used Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS® Clinician and Group (CG-CAHPS data in transitioning toward a patient-centered medical home (PCMH.Study design: Interviews conducted at 14 primary care practices within a large urban Federally Qualified Health Center in California.Participants: Thirty-eight interviews were conducted with lead physicians (n=13, site clinic administrators (n=13, nurse supervisors (n=10, and executive leadership (n=2.Results: Seven themes were identified on how practice leaders used CG-CAHPS data for PCMH transformation. CAHPS® was used: 1 for quality improvement (QI and focusing changes for PCMH transformation; 2 to maintain focus on patient experience; 3 alongside other data; 4 for monitoring site-level trends and changes; 5 to identify, analyze, and monitor areas for improvement; 6 for provider-level performance monitoring and individual coaching within a transparent environment of accountability; and 7 for PCMH transformation, but changes to instrument length, reading level, and the wording of specific items were suggested.Conclusion: Practice leaders used CG-CAHPS data to implement QI, develop a shared vision, and coach providers and staff on performance. They described how CAHPS® helped to improve the patient experience in the PCMH model, including access to routine and urgent care, wait times, provider spending enough time and listening carefully, and courteousness of staff. Regular reporting, reviewing, and discussing of patient-experience data alongside other clinical quality and productivity measures at multilevels of the organization was critical in maximizing the

  1. Delivery of maternal health care in Indigenous primary care services: baseline data for an ongoing quality improvement initiative

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kwedza Ru K


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Australia's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander (Indigenous populations have disproportionately high rates of adverse perinatal outcomes relative to other Australians. Poorer access to good quality maternal health care is a key driver of this disparity. The aim of this study was to describe patterns of delivery of maternity care and service gaps in primary care services in Australian Indigenous communities. Methods We undertook a cross-sectional baseline audit for a quality improvement intervention. Medical records of 535 women from 34 Indigenous community health centres in five regions (Top End of Northern Territory 13, Central Australia 2, Far West New South Wales 6, Western Australia 9, and North Queensland 4 were audited. The main outcome measures included: adherence to recommended protocols and procedures in the antenatal and postnatal periods including: clinical, laboratory and ultrasound investigations; screening for gestational diabetes and Group B Streptococcus; brief intervention/advice on health-related behaviours and risks; and follow up of identified health problems. Results The proportion of women presenting for their first antenatal visit in the first trimester ranged from 34% to 49% between regions; consequently, documentation of care early in pregnancy was poor. Overall, documentation of routine antenatal investigations and brief interventions/advice regarding health behaviours varied, and generally indicated that these services were underutilised. For example, 46% of known smokers received smoking cessation advice/counselling; 52% of all women received antenatal education and 51% had investigation for gestational diabetes. Overall, there was relatively good documentation of follow up of identified problems related to hypertension or diabetes, with over 70% of identified women being referred to a GP/Obstetrician. Conclusion Participating services had both strengths and weaknesses in the delivery of maternal

  2. Teaching quality improvement. (United States)

    Murray, Marry Ellen; Douglas, Stephen; Girdley, Diana; Jarzemsky, Paula


    Practicing nurses are required to engage in quality improvement work as a part of their clinical practice, but few undergraduate nursing education programs offer course work and applied experience in this area. This article presents a description of class content and teaching strategies, assignments, and evaluation strategies designed to achieve the Quality and Safety Education in Nursing competencies related to quality improvement and interdisciplinary teams. Students demonstrate their application of the quality improvement process by designing and implementing a small-scale quality improvement project that they report in storyboard format on a virtual conference Web site.

  3. Results of a sector-wide quality improvement initiative for substance-abuse care: an uncontrolled before-after study in Catalonia, Spain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Colom Joan


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The Health Department of the Regional Government of Catalonia, Spain, issued a quality plan for substance abuse centers. The objective of this paper is to evaluate the impact of a multidimensional quality improvement initiative in the field of substance abuse care and to discuss potentials and limitations for further quality improvement. Methods The study uses an uncontrolled, sector-wide pre-post design. All centers providing services for persons with substance abuse issues in the Autonomous Community of Catalonia participated in this assessment. Measures of compliance were developed based on indicators reported in the literature and by broad stakeholder involvement. We compared pre-post differences in dimension-specific and overall compliance-scores using one-way ANOVA for repeated measures and the Friedman statistic. We described the spread of the data using the inter-quartile range and the Fligner-Killen statistic. Finally, we adjusted compliance scores for location and size using linear and logistic regression models. Results We performed a baseline and follow up assessment in 22 centers for substance abuse care and observed substantial and statistically significant improvements for overall compliance (pre: 60.9%; post: 79.1% and for compliance in the dimensions 'care pathway' (pre: 66.5%; post: 83.5% and 'organization and management' (pre: 50.5%; post: 77.2%. We observed improvements in the dimension 'environment and infrastructure' (pre: 81.8%; post: 95.5% and in the dimension 'relations and user rights' (pre: 66.5%; post: 72.5%; however, these were not statistically significant. The regression analysis suggests that improvements in compliance are positively influenced by being located in the Barcelona region in case of the dimension 'relations and user rights'. Conclusion The positive results of this quality improvement initiative are possibly associated with the successful involvement of stakeholders, the consciously

  4. Evaluating safety of tunneled small bore central venous catheters in chronic kidney disease population: A quality improvement initiative. (United States)

    Bhutani, Gauri; El Ters, Mireille; Kremers, Walter K; Klunder, Joe L; Taler, Sandra J; Williams, Amy W; Stockland, Andrew H; Hogan, Marie C


    Introduction Peripherally inserted central venous catheters (PICCs) may adversely impact future successful arteriovenous fistulae (AVF). As part of a quality improvement project, the performance of tunneled small bore tunneled central venous catheters (TSB-CVCs), as alternatives to PICCs, was evaluated. Methods A retrospective observational study, involving individuals ≥18 years of age who underwent TSB-CVC placement by Interventional Radiology at Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN between 1/1/2010 and 8/30/2013. Findings The study cohort included 92 patients with a median age of 55 (46-67) years, who underwent 108 TSB-CVC placements. Baseline renal disease was present in 71% (77/108). Most TSB-CVCs were placed in hospitalized patients (94%; 102/108); five French in diameter (61%; 66/108) and located in an internal jugular vein (84%; 91/108). Median catheter indwelling time was 20 (11-43) days (n = 84). TSB-CVC-related bloodstream infection, deep venous thrombosis (DVT), and superficial venous thrombosis (SpVT) rates per line were 0.009 (1/108), 0.018 (2/108), and 0.009 (1/108), respectively. Venous outcomes in a subgroup of 54 patients, who had documented PICC placements (n = 161) in addition to TSB-CVC (n = 58) were compared. TSB-CVC-DVT rate was lower than the PICC-DVT rate (0.017 [1/58] vs. 0.106 per line [17/161]; P = 0.04). The TSB-CVC-SpVT rate was not different from the PICC-SpVT rate (0 [0/58] vs. 0.037 [6/161] per line; P = 0.14). Discussion TSB-CVCs demonstrated an excellent safety profile in our study. These catheters should be preferentially utilized for arm vein preservation in advanced kidney disease. Their impact on future AVF success needs further evaluation.


    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bush, Stuart; Robotham, Antony John


    This paper will consider how Quality Function Deployment (QFD) and Design for Manufacture and Assembly (DFMA) processes can be used to improve the design quality of products at the concept stage. We appreciate that both QFD and DFMA are techniques that have been used for some time by mature product...... quality is maintained in design project work. The projects described have been carried out with products manufactured by small to medium sized enterprises (SME's), where we have found significant opportunities for product improvement. The quantitative nature of DFMA analysis results allows the novice...... for continuous improvement of their products. However, we consider that if novice designers are able to successfully utilise design tools like QFD and DFMA and achieve improvements in design quality, then SME’s have no excuses for ignoring the benefits they could bring to their own product development activity....

  6. Four Simple Ward Based Initiatives to Reduce Unnecessary In-Hospital Patient Stay: A Quality Improvement Project (United States)

    Shabbir, Asad; Wali, Gorav; Steuer, Alan


    Prolonged hospital stay not only increases financial stress on the National Health Service but also exposes patients to an unnecessarily high risk of adverse ward events. Each day accumulates approximately £225 in bed costs with additional risks of venousthromboembolism, hospital acquired infections, prescription errors, and falls. Despite being medically fit for discharge (MFFD), patients awaiting care packages with prolonged length of stay (LoS) have poorer outcomes and experience increased rates of mortality as a result. A six cycle prospective audit was carried out to investigate if four simple ward based initiatives could optimise patient flow through a medical ward and reduce LoS of inpatients awaiting social packages and placement. The four daily initiatives were: A morning board round between nurses and doctors to prioritise new or sick patients for early review.A post ward round meeting between the multidisciplinary team to expedite rehabilitation and plan discharges early.An evening board round to highlight which patients needed discharge paperwork for the next day to alleviate the wait for pharmacy.A ‘computer on wheels’ on ward rounds so investigations could be ordered and reviewed at the bedside allowing more time to address patient concerns. A control month in August 2013 and five intervention cycles were completed between September 2013 and January 2014. Prior to intervention, mean time taken for patients to be discharged with a package of care, once declared MFFD, was 25 days. With intervention this value dropped to 1 day. The total LoS fell from 46 days to 16 days. It was also found that the time taken from admission to MFFD status was reduced from 21 days to 15 days. In conclusion this data shows that with four simple modifications to ward behaviour unnecessary inpatient stay can be significantly reduced. PMID:26734432

  7. Four Simple Ward Based Initiatives to Reduce Unnecessary In-Hospital Patient Stay: A Quality Improvement Project. (United States)

    Shabbir, Asad; Wali, Gorav; Steuer, Alan


    Prolonged hospital stay not only increases financial stress on the National Health Service but also exposes patients to an unnecessarily high risk of adverse ward events. Each day accumulates approximately £225 in bed costs with additional risks of venousthromboembolism, hospital acquired infections, prescription errors, and falls. Despite being medically fit for discharge (MFFD), patients awaiting care packages with prolonged length of stay (LoS) have poorer outcomes and experience increased rates of mortality as a result. A six cycle prospective audit was carried out to investigate if four simple ward based initiatives could optimise patient flow through a medical ward and reduce LoS of inpatients awaiting social packages and placement. The four daily initiatives were: A morning board round between nurses and doctors to prioritise new or sick patients for early review.A post ward round meeting between the multidisciplinary team to expedite rehabilitation and plan discharges early.An evening board round to highlight which patients needed discharge paperwork for the next day to alleviate the wait for pharmacy.A 'computer on wheels' on ward rounds so investigations could be ordered and reviewed at the bedside allowing more time to address patient concerns. A control month in August 2013 and five intervention cycles were completed between September 2013 and January 2014. Prior to intervention, mean time taken for patients to be discharged with a package of care, once declared MFFD, was 25 days. With intervention this value dropped to 1 day. The total LoS fell from 46 days to 16 days. It was also found that the time taken from admission to MFFD status was reduced from 21 days to 15 days. In conclusion this data shows that with four simple modifications to ward behaviour unnecessary inpatient stay can be significantly reduced.

  8. Health Insurance Marketplace Quality Initiatives (United States)

    U.S. Department of Health & Human Services — The Affordable Care Act requires the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to develop quality data collection and reporting tools such as a Quality...

  9. Hospital Quality Initiative - Outcome Measures (United States)

    U.S. Department of Health & Human Services — In the interest of promoting high-quality, patient-centered care and accountability, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and Hospital Quality...

  10. How to Begin a Quality Improvement Project. (United States)

    Silver, Samuel A; Harel, Ziv; McQuillan, Rory; Weizman, Adam V; Thomas, Alison; Chertow, Glenn M; Nesrallah, Gihad; Bell, Chaim M; Chan, Christopher T


    Quality improvement involves a combined effort among health care staff and stakeholders to diagnose and treat problems in the health care system. However, health care professionals often lack training in quality improvement methods, which makes it challenging to participate in improvement efforts. This article familiarizes health care professionals with how to begin a quality improvement project. The initial steps involve forming an improvement team that possesses expertise in the quality of care problem, leadership, and change management. Stakeholder mapping and analysis are useful tools at this stage, and these are reviewed to help identify individuals who might have a vested interest in the project. Physician engagement is a particularly important component of project success, and the knowledge that patients/caregivers can offer as members of a quality improvement team should not be overlooked. After a team is formed, an improvement framework helps to organize the scientific process of system change. Common quality improvement frameworks include Six Sigma, Lean, and the Model for Improvement. These models are contrasted, with a focus on the Model for Improvement, because it is widely used and applicable to a variety of quality of care problems without advanced training. It involves three steps: setting aims to focus improvement, choosing a balanced set of measures to determine if improvement occurs, and testing new ideas to change the current process. These new ideas are evaluated using Plan-Do-Study-Act cycles, where knowledge is gained by testing changes and reflecting on their effect. To show the real world utility of the quality improvement methods discussed, they are applied to a hypothetical quality improvement initiative that aims to promote home dialysis (home hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis). This provides an example that kidney health care professionals can use to begin their own quality improvement projects.

  11. Validity and usefulness of members reports of implementation progress in a quality improvement initiative: findings from the Team Check-up Tool (TCT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marsteller Jill A


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Team-based interventions are effective for improving safety and quality of healthcare. However, contextual factors, such as team functioning, leadership, and organizational support, can vary significantly across teams and affect the level of implementation success. Yet, the science for measuring context is immature. The goal of this study is to validate measures from a short instrument tailored to track dynamic context and progress for a team-based quality improvement (QI intervention. Methods Design: Secondary cross-sectional and longitudinal analysis of data from a clustered randomized controlled trial (RCT of a team-based quality improvement intervention to reduce central line-associated bloodstream infection (CLABSI rates in intensive care units (ICUs. Setting: Forty-six ICUs located within 35 faith-based, not-for-profit community hospitals across 12 states in the U.S. Population: Team members participating in an ICU-based QI intervention. Measures: The primary measure is the Team Check-up Tool (TCT, an original instrument that assesses context and progress of a team-based QI intervention. The TCT is administered monthly. Validation measures include CLABSI rate, Team Functioning Survey (TFS and Practice Environment Scale (PES from the Nursing Work Index. Analysis: Temporal stability, responsiveness and validity of the TCT. Results We found evidence supporting the temporal stability, construct validity, and responsiveness of TCT measures of intervention activities, perceived group-level behaviors, and barriers to team progress. Conclusions The TCT demonstrates good measurement reliability, validity, and responsiveness. By having more validated measures on implementation context, researchers can more readily conduct rigorous studies to identify contextual variables linked to key intervention and patient outcomes and strengthen the evidence base on successful spread of efficacious team-based interventions. QI teams

  12. Dairy processing, Improving quality

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smit, G.


    This book discusses raw milk composition, production and quality, and reviews developments in processing from hygiene and HACCP systems to automation, high-pressure processing and modified atmosphere packaging.

  13. Harmonisation Initiatives of Copernicus Data Quality Control (United States)

    Vescovi, F. D.; Lankester, T.; Coleman, E.; Ottavianelli, G.


    The Copernicus Space Component Data Access system (CSCDA) incorporates data contributions from a wide range of satellite missions. Through EO data handling and distribution, CSCDA serves a set of Copernicus Services related to Land, Marine and Atmosphere Monitoring, Emergency Management and Security and Climate Change. The quality of the delivered EO products is the responsibility of each contributing mission, and the Copernicus data Quality Control (CQC) service supports and complements such data quality control activities. The mission of the CQC is to provide a service of quality assessment on the provided imagery, to support the investigation related to product quality anomalies, and to guarantee harmonisation and traceability of the quality information. In terms of product quality control, the CQC carries out analysis of representative sample products for each contributing mission as well as coordinating data quality investigation related to issues found or raised by Copernicus users. Results from the product analysis are systematically collected and the derived quality reports stored in a searchable database. The CQC service can be seen as a privileged focal point with unique comparison capacities over the data providers. The comparison among products from different missions suggests the need for a strong, common effort of harmonisation. Technical terms, definitions, metadata, file formats, processing levels, algorithms, cal/val procedures etc. are far from being homogeneous, and this may generate inconsistencies and confusion among users of EO data. The CSCDA CQC team plays a significant role in promoting harmonisation initiatives across the numerous contributing missions, so that a common effort can achieve optimal complementarity and compatibility among the EO data from multiple data providers. This effort is done in coordination with important initiatives already working towards these goals (e.g. INSPIRE directive, CEOS initiatives, OGC standards, QA4EO


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miodrag Hadžistević


    Full Text Available Tools used in the past to analyze business value creation, such as value chain and process models, are simply too slow, inadequate, or inappropriate to address this new level of business complexity. In stead of that, company has to find way to create quality management system in a multi-layered supply chain. The problem can be solved by networking in the cluster. Cluster can be known as a competitive cooperation in the purpose to gain higher level of competitiveness and success. Bat there is another problem: Organization of the production process in a company is extremely complex process itself, and when we transfer it to the cluster level, we get a complex task which is difficult to solve. For that purpose, this paper analyses the conditions and possibilities that would enable those structures to adapt to changes in the surroundings - flexibility and management adequacy of production and organizational structures - by creating network value system.

  15. Rice Quality Improvement in China

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    @@ 1. Demand for high quality rice in China Rice is the leading cereal crop that contributes about 40% of the national grain production in China. The total output and areas rank the first and the second position in the world, respectively. In recent years, rice production grows steadily, but the quality improvement has been lagged and the quality becomes a limiting factor. As the grain supply exceeding the demand and the grain price plummeted, the State Council put forward expanding China′ s ongoing reform of the grain distribution system in 1998. Along with the foodstuff circulating system reform and market driving, the structure of rice production is adjusted,the planting acreage of early indica rice with poor quality decreased, and that of japonica rice in north China with good quality increased. With the challenge of China joining the WTO, Chinese government starts to pay premium on good quality rice.

  16. Continuous improvement of software quality

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sivertsen, Terje


    The present report is the first Halden Work Report delivered from the OECD Halden Reactor Project's research activity on formal methods and software quality. Of particular concern in this activity is to reach a consensus between regulators, licensees and the nuclear industry on questions related to the effective, industrial use of formal methods. The report gives considerable attention to the importance of continuous improvement as a characteristic of a living software quality system, and to the need of providing a basis for software process/product quality integration. In particular, the report discusses these aspects from the perspectives of defect prevention, formal methods, Total Quality Management (TQM), and Bayesian Belief Nets. Another concern is to promote controlled experiments on the use of new methods, techniques, and tools. This is achieved partly by reviewing suggestions on the collection and experimental use of data, and by surveying a number of metrics believed to have some potential for comparison studies (author) (ml)

  17. Quality Improvement Practices and Trends

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dahlgaard, Jens J.; Hartz, Ove; Edgeman, Rick L.


    professor, as well as key individuals from various industries. In addition to the above activities, Rick will be working with the European Foundation for Quality Management on their "European Master's Programme in Total Quality Management." That program involves a consortium of European universities. Rick......The following article, "Quality Improvement Practices and Trends in Denmark," is the first in a series of papers arranged for and co-authored by Dr. Rick L. Edgeman. Rick is a member of QE's Editorial Board and is on sabbatical from Colorado State University. During the year, Rick and his family...... has begun the process of developing a comparable consortium of American universities for the same purpose-- an activity which is cosponsored by the Education Division of the American Society for Quality (ASQ)....

  18. Improving Air Quality Forecasts with AURA Observations (United States)

    Newchurch, M. J.; Biazer, A.; Khan, M.; Koshak, W. J.; Nair, U.; Fuller, K.; Wang, L.; Parker, Y.; Williams, R.; Liu, X.


    Past studies have identified model initial and boundary conditions as sources of reducible errors in air-quality simulations. In particular, improving the initial condition improves the accuracy of short-term forecasts as it allows for the impact of local emissions to be realized by the model and improving boundary conditions improves long range transport through the model domain, especially in recirculating anticyclones. During the August 2006 period, we use AURA/OMI ozone measurements along with MODIS and CALIPSO aerosol observations to improve the initial and boundary conditions of ozone and Particulate Matter. Assessment of the model by comparison of the control run and satellite assimilation run to the IONS06 network of ozonesonde observations, which comprise the densest ozone sounding campaign ever conducted in North America, to AURA/TES ozone profile measurements, and to the EPA ground network of ozone and PM measurements will show significant improvement in the CMAQ calculations that use AURA initial and boundary conditions. Further analyses of lightning occurrences from ground and satellite observations and AURA/OMI NO2 column abundances will identify the lightning NOx signal evident in OMI measurements and suggest pathways for incorporating the lightning and NO2 data into the CMAQ simulations.

  19. The Improvement of Services Quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cristian-Ştefan Craciun


    Full Text Available In the last decades, there was a strong national and international tendency to increase the services role in the economic social life. The technical progress, the enhancing social division of labor and the increase of demand both from the population and entrepreneurs led to the services development and diversification. Due to the recent radical changes in all economic, political and social fields, the economic agents’ goal to gain a rapid and substantial profit was gradually replaced by the fierce struggle for quality domination among competitors. Therefore, there is an increasing need to find more effective ways to improve the services quality, such as training and motivating the staff and implementing a quality management system.

  20. Shipbuilding pipeline production quality improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. Buksa


    Full Text Available Purpose: The pipeline production is one of major processes in shipbuilding industry. Quality improvement and risk assessment in this process can yield significant savings, both in terms of internal quality costs as well as in terms of customer satisfactions.Design/methodology/approach: Shipbuilding pipeline production quality improvement has been carried out by application of FMEA (Failure Mode and Effect Analysis method. For the successful implementation of FMEA method it is necessary to identify process failure modes or possibility of the appearance of non-compliance, as well as their possible causes. For qualitative analysis of key input variables of the process, in the paper is used Ishikawa diagram and p-chart.Findings: It is shown that proposed approach to risk assessment in shipbuilding pipeline production is applicable to real casa scenario. The analysis has identified the points in the process with the highest probability of occurrence of nonconformities, or the highest risk for error.Research limitations/implications: As the experimenting has been conducted in shipyard, within production process, research schedule must have been set in accordance with production pace. Also, due to character of production process the data collecting was adopted to the production plan in that particular moment.Practical implications: Dealing with causes of potential nonconformities in the process can significantly contribute to the reliability and robustness of the process. Corrective actions that have been taken based on results of analysis significantly contributed to the level of quality in the pipeline production process.Originality/value: The pepper is dealing with a well known method applied in different production environment that are mostly conservative in production approach. It was shown that successful application of proposed approach can yield benefits especially in improved quality of produced pipelines within shipbuilding industry.

  1. Using Quality Function Deployment to Improve Reference Services Quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pao-Long Chang


    Full Text Available Much research has been conducted regarding how reference librarians can evaluate and improve the quality of the answers they provide to users' inquiries. There has been considerably less discussion, however, concerning how to improve the quality of the delivery of those answers, and to upgrade the overall quality of reference services as a whole. Suggestions for improving the quality of service contained within the business literature may be applied to improve library services as well. In this paper the use of Quality Function Deployment (QFD as a tool for improving reference services quality is explored and an adapted framework referred to as service quality function deployment is proposed.

  2. Power Quality Improvement Using UPQC

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Kalaipriya


    Full Text Available This paper presents the power quality improvement using UPQC. UPQC consists of series inverter, shunt inverter and capacitance. Every inverter connected with pulse generator for switching on. UPQC is especially obtained to resolve different kind of power quality drawback like reactive power compensation, voltage interruption and harmonics. DVR is connected in series to deliver the active and reactive power to distribution network. DC-link capacitors stay high as a result of the DVR needs a minimum amount of DC-link voltage to compensate sag. So, DC –link voltage is connected with PV module to reduce the cost. Design of UPQC device with multi-bus system obtained using MATLAB/SIMULINK and simulation results are mentioned to support the developed conception.

  3. SAMIRA - SAtellite based Monitoring Initiative for Regional Air quality (United States)

    Schneider, Philipp; Stebel, Kerstin; Ajtai, Nicolae; Diamandi, Andrei; Horalek, Jan; Nicolae, Doina; Stachlewska, Iwona; Zehner, Claus


    Here, we present a new ESA-funded project entitled Satellite based Monitoring Initiative for Regional Air quality (SAMIRA), which aims at improving regional and local air quality monitoring through synergetic use of data from present and upcoming satellites, traditionally used in situ air quality monitoring networks and output from chemical transport models. Through collaborative efforts in four countries, namely Romania, Poland, the Czech Republic and Norway, all with existing air quality problems, SAMIRA intends to support the involved institutions and associated users in their national monitoring and reporting mandates as well as to generate novel research in this area. Despite considerable improvements in the past decades, Europe is still far from achieving levels of air quality that do not pose unacceptable hazards to humans and the environment. Main concerns in Europe are exceedances of particulate matter (PM), ground-level ozone, benzo(a)pyrene (BaP) and nitrogen dioxide (NO2). While overall sulfur dioxide (SO2) emissions have decreased in recent years, regional concentrations can still be high in some areas. The objectives of SAMIRA are to improve algorithms for the retrieval of hourly aerosol optical depth (AOD) maps from SEVIRI, and to develop robust methods for deriving column- and near-surface PM maps for the study area by combining satellite AOD with information from regional models. The benefit to existing monitoring networks (in situ, models, satellite) by combining these datasets using data fusion methods will be tested for satellite-based NO2, SO2, and PM/AOD. Furthermore, SAMIRA will test and apply techniques for downscaling air quality-related EO products to a spatial resolution that is more in line with what is generally required for studying urban and regional scale air quality. This will be demonstrated for a set of study sites that include the capitals of the four countries and the highly polluted areas along the border of Poland and the

  4. [Potentials of cooperative quality management initiatives: BQS Institute projects, January 2010 - July 2013]. (United States)

    Veit, Christof; Bungard, Sven; Hertle, Dagmar; Grothaus, Franz-Josef; Kötting, Joachim; Arnold, Nicolai


    Alongside the projects of internal quality management and mandatory quality assurance there is a variety of quality driven projects across institutions initiated and run by various partners to continuously improve the quality of care. The multiplicity and characteristics of these projects are discussed on the basis of projects run by the BQS Institute between 2010 and 2013. In addition, useful interactions and linking with mandatory quality benchmarking and with internal quality management are discussed. (As supplied by publisher).

  5. Finding a balance between "value added" and feeling valued: revising models of care. The human factor of implementing a quality improvement initiative using Lean methodology within the healthcare sector. (United States)

    Deans, Rachel; Wade, Shawna


    Growing demand from clients waiting to access vital services in a healthcare sector under economic constraint, coupled with the pressure for ongoing improvement within a multi-faceted organization, can have a significant impact on the front-line staff, who are essential to the successful implementation of any quality improvement initiative. The Lean methodology is a management system for continuous improvement based on the Toyota Production System; it focuses on two main themes: respect for people and the elimination of waste or non-value-added activities. Within the Lean process, value-added is used to describe any activity that contributes directly to satisfying the needs of the client, and non-value-added refers to any activity that takes time, space or resources but does not contribute directly to satisfying client needs. Through the revision of existing models of service delivery, the authors' organization has made an impact on increasing access to care and has supported successful engagement of staff in the process, while ensuring that the focus remains on the central needs of clients and families accessing services. While the performance metrics continue to exhibit respectable results for this strategic priority, further gains are expected over the next 18-24 months.

  6. Initial Survey Instructions for Spring Water Monitoring : Quality (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — Initial survey instructions for 1.04 spring water monitoring (quality) and 1.06 management unit water monitoring (quality) at Fish Springs National Wildlife Refuge....

  7. Improving Health and Quality of Life (United States)

    ... Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) Share Compartir Improving Health and Quality of Life On this Page Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) Support ... and improve their ability to function and their quality of life. Doctors may refer some of their CFS patients ...

  8. Improving Initial Assessment: Guide to Good Practice (United States)

    Knasel, Eddy; Meed, John; Rossetti, Anna; Read, Hilary


    This guide is aimed at anyone in work-based training who is responsible for learners during their first few weeks. Readers will (1) understand the value and purpose of initial assessment in key skills and Skills for Life; (2) become familiar with a range of techniques for the initial assessment; (3) plan an initial assessment system that is…

  9. Preanalytical quality improvement : in quality we trust

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lippi, Giuseppe; Becan-McBride, Kathleen; Behulova, Darina; Bowen, Raffick A.; Church, Stephen; Delanghe, Joris; Grankvist, Kjell; Kitchen, Steve; Nybo, Mads; Nauck, Matthias; Nikolac, Nora; Palicka, Vladimir; Plebani, Mario; Sandberg, Sverre; Simundic, Ana-Maria


    Total quality in laboratory medicine should be defined as the guarantee that each activity throughout the total testing process is correctly performed, providing valuable medical decision-making and effective patient care. In the past decades, a 10-fold reduction in the analytical error rate has bee

  10. Building Perinatal Case Manager Capacity Using Quality Improvement


    Fitzgerald, Elaine


    Improving breastfeeding rates among Black women is a potential strategy to address disparities in health outcomes that disproportionately impact Black women and children. This quality improvement (QI) initiative aimed to improve perinatal case manager knowledge and self-efficacy to promote breastfeeding among Black, low-income women who use services through Boston Healthy Start Initiative. QI methodology was used to develop and test a two-part strategy for perinatal case managers to promote a...

  11. Quality improvement education to improve performance on ulcerative colitis quality measures and care processes aligned with National Quality Strategy priorities. (United States)

    Greene, Laurence; Moreo, Kathleen


    Studies on inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) have reported suboptimal approaches to patient care. In the United States, the findings have motivated leading gastroenterology organizations to call for initiatives that support clinicians in aligning their practices with quality measures for IBD and priorities of the National Quality Strategy (NQS). We designed and implemented a quality improvement (QI) education program on ulcerative colitis in which patient charts were audited for 30 gastroenterologists before (n = 300 charts) and after (n = 290 charts) they participated in QI-focused educational activities. Charts were audited for nine measures, selected for their alignment with four NQS priorities: making care safer, ensuring patient engagement, promoting communication, and promoting effective treatment practices. Four of the measures, including guideline-directed vaccinations and assessments of disease type and activity, were part of the CMS Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS). The other five measures involved counseling patients on various topics in ulcerative colitis management, documentation of side effects, assessment of adherence status, and simplification of dosing. The gastroenterologists also completed baseline and post-education surveys designed to assess qualitative outcomes. One of the educational interventions was a private audit feedback session conducted for each gastroenterologist. The sessions were designed to support participants in identifying measures reflecting suboptimal care quality and developing action plans for improvement. In continuous improvement cycles, follow-up interventions included QI tools and educational monographs. Across the nine chart variables, post-education improvements ranged from 0% to 48%, with a mean improvement of 15.9%. Survey findings revealed improvements in self-reported understanding of quality measures and intentions to apply them to practice, and lower rates of perceived significant barriers to high-quality

  12. Health care quality improvement publication trends. (United States)

    Sun, Gordon H; MacEachern, Mark P; Perla, Rocco J; Gaines, Jean M; Davis, Matthew M; Shrank, William H


    To analyze the extent of academic interest in quality improvement (QI) initiatives in medical practice, annual publication trends for the most well-known QI methodologies being used in health care settings were analyzed. A total of 10 key medical- and business-oriented library databases were examined: PubMed, Ovid MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, PsycINFO, ISI Web of Science, Scopus, the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, ABI/INFORM, and Business Source Complete. A total of 13 057 articles were identified that discuss at least 1 of 10 well-known QI concepts used in health care contexts, 8645 (66.2%) of which were classified as original research. "Total quality management" was the only methodology to demonstrate a significant decline in publication over time. "Continuous quality improvement" was the most common topic of study across all publication years, whereas articles discussing Lean methodology demonstrated the largest growth in publication volume over the past 2 decades. Health care QI publication volume increased substantially beginning in 1991.

  13. Status of quality initiatives, Part II. (United States)

    Combes, J R; Scanlan, G F; Priselac, T M


    Speaking at the first national Summit on Medical Errors and Patient Safety Research last September, former American Hospital Association Chairman Gordon Sprenger called for plugging the research holes in several areas to improve patient safety. He identified critical areas where more research to improve patient safety would be helpful: changing the culture of health care, learning from other high-risk fields, studying the value of current safety practices, examining safety in nonhospital setting, closing the gaps between knowledge and practice, creating early warning systems, and looking at the human factors. Specifically, Sprenger raised the following questions to explore: What are the critical factors that make for a more open learning environment? What regulatory and legislative changes are necessary to create a nonpunitive, blameless environment? What has worked to improve safety in other fields? What is transferable to health care? Which of the current safety practices work well and how can they be improved? Which don't? How can systems solutions that prevent errors be adapted for settings outside of the hospital that are smaller and have less organizational structure? How can accepted standards of care and appropriate use of new technologies to improve care be better shared? Are they properly used? How can we make better use of precursor events to predict the occurrence of medical error? How can we involve patients in identifying potential errors? How can we advance our understanding of why humans err?

  14. SF Bay Water Quality Improvement Fund (United States)

    EPAs grant program to protect and restore San Francisco Bay. The San Francisco Bay Water Quality Improvement Fund (SFBWQIF) has invested in 58 projects along with 70 partners contributing to restore wetlands, water quality, and reduce polluted runoff.,

  15. Venture Capital Initiative: Ohio's School Improvement Effort. (United States)

    Yoo, Soonhwa; Loadman, William E.

    In 1994 the Ohio State Legislature established Venture Capital to support school restructuring. The Venture Capital school initiative is a concept borrowed from the business community in which the corporate entity provides risk capital to parts of the organization to stimulate creative ideas and to provide opportunities for local entities to try…

  16. African primary care research: Quality improvement cycles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claire Van Deventer


    Full Text Available Improving the quality of clinical care and translating evidence into clinical practice is commonly a focus of primary care research. This article is part of a series on primary care research and outlines an approach to performing a quality improvement cycle as part of a research assignment at a Masters level. The article aims to help researchers design their quality improvement cycle and write their research project proposal.

  17. African primary care research: quality improvement cycles. (United States)

    van Deventer, Claire; Mash, Bob


    Improving the quality of clinical care and translating evidence into clinical practice is commonly a focus of primary care research. This article is part of a series on primary care research and outlines an approach to performing a quality improvement cycle as part of a research assignment at a Masters level. The article aims to help researchers design their quality improvement cycle and write their research project proposal.



    Aleksandar Marić; Slavko Arsovski; Jasna Mastilović


    Food industry occupies special place in the processing industry, especially when we talk on the manufacturing of bakery products. Variable products quality on the market initiated the authors of this study to make an attempt, using comparative analysis of methods for quality control that are at most applied in bakery plants and other "convenient" methods to indicate the shortcomings and to argue convenience of using of methods that would improve testing of the quality. That approach could cre...


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aleksandar Marić


    Full Text Available Food industry occupies special place in the processing industry, especially when we talk on the manufacturing of bakery products. Variable products quality on the market initiated the authors of this study to make an attempt, using comparative analysis of methods for quality control that are at most applied in bakery plants and other "convenient" methods to indicate the shortcomings and to argue convenience of using of methods that would improve testing of the quality. That approach could create a base for designing of model of quality improvement the baking industry.


    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    The relationship between major quality tools such as quality function development (QFD),failure mode and effects analysis (FMEA), design of experiments (DOE) and statistical process control (SPC) is analyzed through an extensive review of the literature and the concurrent quality engineering philosophy, and a basic structure for the integration of quality tools is presented. An integrated quality management system (IQMS) is developed using C++ Builder, nmning in the Windows 2000 Server environment with the basic internet connections, and SQL Server 2000 as the platform for developing the database. An illustrative example applying IQMS to the continuous quality improvement for a crane equipment manufacturing is reported. The result shows that the application of IQMS can optimize the process of design and manufacturing, shorten the cycle time of product, reduce the cost, and realize quality improvement continuously. The proposed integrated framework with IQMS is believed to be applicable to continuous quality improvement in many manufacturing companies.

  1. 专病一体化管理模式对提高腹膜透析质量的重要作用%Impact of continuous quality improvement initiatives on clinical outcomes in peritoneal dialysis

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    周岩; 周婷婷; 王涵; 周玉超; 李涛彧; 刘志红; 俞雨生


    Objective We evaluated the role of a quality improvement initiative in improving clinical outcomes in peritoneal di-alysis ( PD) . Methods In a retrospective analysis of 6 years of data from a hospital registry, the period between 1 July 2005 and 30 June 2008 ( control group) provided baseline data from before implementation of systemic outcomes monitoring, and the period between 1 July 2008 and 30 June 2011 [continuous quality improvement (CQI) group] represented the time when a CQI program was in place.Per-itonitis incidence, patient and technique survival, cardiovascular status, causes of death, and drop-out were compared between the groups. Results In the 370 patients of the CQI group and the 249 patients of the control group, the predominant underlying kidney diseases were chronic glomerulonephritis and diabetic nephropathy.After implementation of the CQI initiative, the peritonitis rate de-clined to 1 episode in 77.3 patient-months from 1 episode in 22.6 patient-months.In the CQI group, the complicance of blood pressure was more significantly improved than the control group ( 67.8% vs 47.4%,P<0.05).During the 3 years of follow-up,cardiothoracic ratio and IVST were significantly increased in the control group [0.55 ± 0.08 vs 0.51 ±0.05,P<0.05,11.07 ±1.66 mm vs 10.25 ±1.38 mm, P<0.05〗.The difference of LVID between the two groups was signifi-cant at the 2nd and 3rd year of follow-up(P<0.05).Patient survival at 1, 2, and 3 years was significantly higher in the CQI group (97.3%, 96.3%, and 96.3%respectively) than in the control group (92.6%, 82.4%, and 67.3%respectively, P<0.001).Imple-mentation of the CQI initiative also appeared to significantly improve technique survival rates:95.6%, 92.6%, and 92.6%in the CQI group compared with 89.6%, 79.2%, and 76.8%in the control group (P<0.001) after 1, 2, and 3 years respectively. Conclusion Integration of a CQI process into a PD program can significantly improve the quality of therapy and its outcomes

  2. Strategy to Support Improvement of Healthcare Quality.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ing. Andrea Zejdlova


    Full Text Available One of the latest market-based solutions to the rising costs and quality gaps in health care is pay for performance. Pay for performance is the use of financial incentives to promote the delivery of designated standards of care. It is an emerging movement in health insurance (initially in Britain and United States. Providers under this arrangement are rewarded for meeting pre-established targets for delivery of healthcare services. This is a fundamental change from fee for service payment.Also known as "P4P" or “value-based purchasing,” this payment model rewards physicians, hospitals, medical groups, and other healthcare providers for meeting certain performance measures for quality and efficiency. Disincentives, such as eliminating payments for negative consequences of care (medical errors or increased costs, have also been proposed. In the developed nations, the rapidly aging population and rising health care costs have recently brought P4P to the forefront of health policy discussions. Pilot studies underway in several large healthcare systems have shown modest improvements in specific outcomes and increased efficiency, but no cost savings due to added administrative requirements. Statements by professional medical societies generally support incentive programs to increase the quality of health care, but express concern with the validity of quality indicators, patient and physician autonomy and privacy, and increased administrative burdens. This article serves as an introduction to pay for performance. We discuss the goals and structure of pay for performance plans and their limitations and potential consequences in the health care area.

  3. How to Sustain Change and Support Continuous Quality Improvement. (United States)

    Silver, Samuel A; McQuillan, Rory; Harel, Ziv; Weizman, Adam V; Thomas, Alison; Nesrallah, Gihad; Bell, Chaim M; Chan, Christopher T; Chertow, Glenn M


    To achieve sustainable change, quality improvement initiatives must become the new way of working rather than something added on to routine clinical care. However, most organizational change is not maintained. In this next article in this Moving Points in Nephrology feature on quality improvement, we provide health care professionals with strategies to sustain and support quality improvement. Threats to sustainability may be identified both at the beginning of a project and when it is ready for implementation. The National Health Service Sustainability Model is reviewed as one example to help identify issues that affect long-term success of quality improvement projects. Tools to help sustain improvement include process control boards, performance boards, standard work, and improvement huddles. Process control and performance boards are methods to communicate improvement results to staff and leadership. Standard work is a written or visual outline of current best practices for a task and provides a framework to ensure that changes that have improved patient care are consistently and reliably applied to every patient encounter. Improvement huddles are short, regular meetings among staff to anticipate problems, review performance, and support a culture of improvement. Many of these tools rely on principles of visual management, which are systems transparent and simple so that every staff member can rapidly distinguish normal from abnormal working conditions. Even when quality improvement methods are properly applied, the success of a project still depends on contextual factors. Context refers to aspects of the local setting in which the project operates. Context affects resources, leadership support, data infrastructure, team motivation, and team performance. For these reasons, the same project may thrive in a supportive context and fail in a different context. To demonstrate the practical applications of these quality improvement principles, these principles are

  4. Improving mental health outcomes: achieving equity through quality improvement (United States)

    Poots, Alan J.; Green, Stuart A.; Honeybourne, Emmi; Green, John; Woodcock, Thomas; Barnes, Ruth; Bell, Derek


    Objective To investigate equity of patient outcomes in a psychological therapy service, following increased access achieved by a quality improvement (QI) initiative. Design Retrospective service evaluation of health outcomes; data analysed by ANOVA, chi-squared and Statistical Process Control. Setting A psychological therapy service in Westminster, London, UK. Participants People living in the Borough of Westminster, London, attending the service (from either healthcare professional or self-referral) between February 2009 and May 2012. Intervention(s) Social marketing interventions were used to increase referrals, including the promotion of the service through local media and through existing social networks. Main Outcome Measure(s) (i) Severity of depression on entry using Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ9). (ii) Changes to severity of depression following treatment (ΔPHQ9). (iii) Changes in attainment of a meaningful improvement in condition assessed by a key performance indicator. Results Patients from areas of high deprivation entered the service with more severe depression (M = 15.47, SD = 6.75), compared with patients from areas of low (M = 13.20, SD = 6.75) and medium (M = 14.44, SD = 6.64) deprivation. Patients in low, medium and high deprivation areas attained similar changes in depression score (ΔPHQ9: M = −6.60, SD = 6.41). Similar proportions of patients achieved the key performance indicator across initiative phase and deprivation categories. Conclusions QI methods improved access to mental health services; this paper finds no evidence for differences in clinical outcomes in patients, regardless of level of deprivation, interpreted as no evidence of inequity in the service with respect to this outcome. PMID:24521701

  5. Nationwide quality improvement in lung cancer care

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jakobsen, Erik Winther; Green, Anders; Oesterlind, Kell


    To improve prognosis and quality of lung cancer care the Danish Lung Cancer Group has developed a strategy consisting of national clinical guidelines and a clinical quality and research database. The first edition of our guidelines was published in 1998 and our national lung cancer registry...... was opened for registrations in 2000. This article describes methods and results obtained by multidisciplinary collaboration and illustrates how quality of lung cancer care can be improved by establishing and monitoring result and process indicators....

  6. Techniques to improve technological and sanitary quality


    David, C.; Celette, F.; Abecassis, J; Carcea, M.; Dubois, D.; Friedel, J. K.; Hellou, G.; Jeuffroy, M.-H.; Mäder, P.; Thomsen, I.K.


    Agronomical ways for better quality and safety Choice of cultivar is an efficient way to obtain higher grain quality. Intercropping legumes (grain or forage) improves weed competition and N availability for wheat crop or succeeding crop. Green manure can be an effective alternative to farmyard manure. Fertilization with readily available nitrogen improves yield and quality when water is available. Reduced tillage affects soil fertility and wheat yield but has little effects on grain qualit...

  7. POSNA Quality, Safety, Value Initiative 3 Years Old and Growing Strong. POSNA Precourse 2014. (United States)

    McCarthy, James J; Alessandrini, Evaline A; Schoettker, Pamela J


    The purpose of this paper is to summarize the Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America (POSNA) quality, safety, and value initiative (QSVI). Specifically, it will outline the history of the program, describe typical quality improvement techniques, and how they differ from traditional research techniques, and, finally, describe some of the many projects completed, currently underway, or in planning for POSNA QSVI.

  8. Quality improvement practices and trends in Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dahlgaard, Jens Jørn; Hartz, Ove; Edgeman, Rick L.


    It is now well known that the history of quality improvement is neither uniquely American, nor uniquely Japanese, although the contributions from these two nations have received more attention perhaps than those originating elsewhere. This is the first in a series of articles intended to increase...... awareness of quality improvement practices and trends in various European nations, with particular emphasis on western Europe and Scandinavia. Herein the recent history of quality improvement in Denmark is explored and the quality improvement efforts in two Danish companies are chronicled. It is hoped...... that taken in its entirety, this series of articles will contribute to understanding both the rich fabric of European quality improvement that is independent of national boundaries and the colorful national fibers of which the fabric is made....

  9. Power Quality Improvement Using DVR

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Benachaiba


    Full Text Available Voltage sags and swells in the medium and low voltage distribution grid are considered to be the most frequent type of power quality problems based on recent power quality studies. Their impact on sensitive loads is severe. The impact ranges from load disruptions to substantial economic losses up to millions of dollars. Different solutions have been developed to protect sensitive loads against such disturbances but the DVR is considered to be the most efficient and effective solution. Its appeal includes lower cost, smaller size and its dynamic response to the disturbance. This research described DVR principles and voltage restoration methods for balanced and/or unbalanced voltage sags and swells in a distribution system. Simulation results were presented to illustrate and understand the performances of DVR under voltage sags/swells conditions.

  10. Can Technology Improve the Quality of Colonoscopy? (United States)

    Thirumurthi, Selvi; Ross, William A; Raju, Gottumukkala S


    In order for screening colonoscopy to be an effective tool in reducing colon cancer incidence, exams must be performed in a high-quality manner. Quality metrics have been presented by gastroenterology societies and now include higher adenoma detection rate targets than in the past. In many cases, the quality of colonoscopy can often be improved with simple low-cost interventions such as improved procedure technique, implementing split-dose bowel prep, and monitoring individuals' performances. Emerging technology has expanded our field of view and image quality during colonoscopy. We will critically review several technological advances in the context of quality metrics and discuss if technology can really improve the quality of colonoscopy.

  11. 添加初花期骆驼刺改善苜蓿青贮品质%Improve alfalfa silage quality by adding alhagi sparsifolia shap in initial bloom stage

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    蒋慧; 方雷; 周小玲; 李胜利


    .05); the numbers of lactobacillus in the silage of different treatments were 5.1×105 (Ⅰ), 1.5×1011 (Ⅱ), 3.5×106 (Ⅲ), 3.5×107 (Ⅳ), and 6.5×107 (Ⅴ), respectively, and those in forage at harvest were 3.3×104, 5.5×106, 6.5×104, 7.3×104, and 7.2×105, respectively. The numbers of yeast living cells in silage were 3.3×104 (Ⅰ), 5.5×106 (Ⅱ), 6.5×104 (Ⅲ), 7.3×104 (Ⅳ) and 7.2×105 (Ⅴ), respectively, while those in forage at harvest (P<0.05) were 3.5×105, 6.5×103, 4.5×105, 1.5×105 and 6.5×104, respectively. The pH values of the groupⅡwas minimum (3.72);compared with that of the control group (4.32), adding A. sparsifolia Shap could significantly reduce the pH value. Lactic acid (LA) contents were higher in mix-silage (Ⅲ, Ⅳ, and Ⅴ were 4.70 %, 5.25%and 6.12 %, respectively) than in alfalfa silage (Ⅰwas 3.73%, P<0.01). The contents of propionic acid (PA), butyric acid (BA), isovaleric, methanol, ethanol, propanol were lower in mixed silage than in alfalfa silage (P<0.05);PA and BA contents in alfalfa silage were 0.43%and 1.347%, respectively, and the minimums of PA and BA contents in mixed silage were 0.26% (Ⅳ) and 0.357% (Ⅴ), respectively. Meanwhile, PA and BA contents were higher in mixed silage than in A. sparsifolia Shap silage (it’s traces). The maximum of isolaleric content was 0.42% inⅠ and the minimum was 0.20% in Ⅴ. The contents of methanol, ethanol, propanol in mixed silage (Ⅲ, Ⅳ, Ⅴ) were at trace level or not detectable. The ammonia nitrogen contents of mixed silage were significantly decreased compared with that of alfalfa silage (P<0.05), the maximum was 10.16% and the minimum was 4.76%of ratio of ammonia nitrogen to total nitrogen in Ⅰ and Ⅲ, respectively. In conclusion, mixed silage improves silage quality of alfalfa, and also softens camel thorn spiny of A. sparsifolia Shap in initial bloom stage. Mixed silages are excellent in sensory and fermented quality. To improve the quality of the silage, A


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flavia, CAIA


    Full Text Available According to Gartner estimates, due to increased variety, speed and data volume, by 2015 there will be a global demand of 4.4 million professionals for real-time analysis of data from sources with different structures, but only one third of the demand will be met. The purpose of this research is to identify possible solutions for improved academic results in the IT domain, considering the time management policies, the content and the student motivations, as well as the business strategy tendencies. These proposals are targeted toward meeting the IT specialists demand. The research is composed of two parts: the first explores the Romanian IT labour market characteristics, while the second investigates the academic education policies that can help mitigate deficiencies and attain higher performance. The deficiencies are identified through a series of statistical research and analysis based on national level databases, adopting a quantitative approach. The policies proposed are supported by a flow model developed considering the students' activity, motivation, traits and results, measured and analysed quantitatively.

  13. The impact of leadership qualities on quality management improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ph. D. Radoslaw Wolniak


    Full Text Available Currently, the importance of leadership is considered more and more often in quality management. The need of an appropriate leader has been already emphasized in ISO 9000 standards, in TQM philosophy as well as in different models of improvement which are used in the methodologies of prizing quality. Yet, it is in the concept of TQL where the attitude based on the need of leadership in an organization has achieved its best-developed, full shape. On the basis of the conducted studies, the following publication presents the analysis of the dependence between leadership qualities of managers and the improvement of quality management. There has been an attempt to define the qualities, which a manager being responsible for quality management, should have.

  14. The impact of leadership qualities on quality management improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Radoslaw Wolniak


    Full Text Available Currently, the importance of leadership is considered more and more often in quality management. The need of an appropriate leader has been already emphasized in ISO 9000 standards, in TQM philosophy as well as in different models of improvement which are used in the methodologies of prizing quality. Yet, it is in the concept of TQL where the attitude based on the need of leadership in an organization has achieved its best-developed, full shape. On the basis of the conducted studies, the following publication presents the analysis of the dependence between leadership qualities of managers and the improvement of quality management. There has been an attempt to define the qualities, which a manager being responsible for quality management, should have.

  15. [Quality improvement potential in the pharmaceutical industry]. (United States)

    Nusser, Michael


    The performance of the German pharmaceutical industry, future challenges and obstacles to quality improvement are assessed from a systems-of-innovation perspective, using appropriate innovation indicators. The current close-to-market performance indicators paint an unfavourable picture. Early R&D indicators (e.g., publications, patents), however, reveal a positive trend. A lot of obstacles to quality improvements are identified with respect to knowledge base, knowledge/technology transfer, industrial R&D processes, capital markets, market attractiveness and both regulatory and political framework conditions. On this basis, recommendations will finally be derived to improve quality in the pharmaceutical industry.

  16. Quality-of-care initiative in patients treated surgically for perforated peptic ulcer

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Møller, M H; Larsson, H J; Rosenstock, S;


    Mortality and morbidity are considerable after treatment for perforated peptic ulcer (PPU). Since 2003, a Danish nationwide quality-of-care (QOC) improvement initiative has focused on reducing preoperative delay, and improving perioperative monitoring and care for patients with PPU. The present...

  17. Power theories for improved power quality

    CERN Document Server

    Pasko, Marian


    Power quality describes a set of parameters of electric power and the load’s ability to function properly under specific conditions. It is estimated that problems relating to power quality costs the European industry hundreds of billions of Euros annually. In contrast, financing for the prevention of these problems amount to fragments of these costs. Power Theories for Improved Power Quality addresses this imbalance by presenting and assessing a range of methods and problems related to improving the quality of electric power supply. Focusing particularly on active compensators and the DSP based control algorithms, Power Theories for Improved Power Quality introduces the fundamental problems of electrical power. This introduction is followed by chapters which discuss: •‘Power theories’ including their historical development and application to practical problems, •operational principles of active compensator’s DSP control based algorithms using examples and results from laboratory research, and •t...

  18. Software Quality Metrics for Geant4: An Initial Assessment

    CERN Document Server

    Ronchieri, Elisabetta; Giacomini, Francesco


    In the context of critical applications, such as shielding and radiation protection, ensuring the quality of simulation software they depend on is of utmost importance. The assessment of simulation software quality is important not only to determine its adoption in experimental applications, but also to guarantee reproducibility of outcome over time. In this study, we present initial results from an ongoing analysis of Geant4 code based on established software metrics. The analysis evaluates the current status of the code to quantify its characteristics with respect to documented quality standards; further assessments concern evolutions over a series of release distributions. We describe the selected metrics that quantify software attributes ranging from code complexity to maintainability, and highlight what metrics are most effective at evaluating radiation transport software quality. The quantitative assessment of the software is initially focused on a set of Geant4 packages, which play a key role in a wide...

  19. Healthcare quality improvement programme improves monitoring of people with diabetes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Denig, Petra


    Question. Does a healthcare quality improvement programme, incorporating education and claims-based feedback about practice-specific models of monitoring diabetes care, increase the regularity with which primary care physicians assess people with diabetes mellitus receiving Medicare benefits? Study

  20. Improving Indicators in a Brazilian Hospital Through Quality-Improvement Programs Based on STS Database Reports

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pedro Gabriel Melo de Barros e Silva


    Full Text Available ABSTRACT OBJECTIVE: To report the initial changes after quality-improvement programs based on STS-database in a Brazilian hospital. METHODS: Since 2011 a Brazilian hospital has joined STS-Database and in 2012 multifaceted actions based on STS reports were implemented aiming reductions in the time of mechanical ventilation and in the intensive care stay and also improvements in evidence-based perioperative therapies among patients who underwent coronary artery bypass graft surgeries. RESULTS: All the 947 patients submitted to coronary artery bypass graft surgeries from July 2011 to June 2014 were analyzed and there was an improvement in all the three target endpoints after the implementation of the quality-improvement program but the reduction in time on mechanical ventilation was not statistically significant after adjusting for prognostic characteristics. CONCLUSION: The initial experience with STS registry in a Brazilian hospital was associated with improvement in most of targeted quality-indicators.

  1. Virginia Star Quality Initiative: QRS Profile. The Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment (United States)

    Child Trends, 2010


    This paper presents a profile of Virginia's Star Quality Initiative prepared as part of the Child Care Quality Rating System (QRS) Assessment Study. The profile consists of several sections and their corresponding descriptions including: (1) Program Information; (2) Rating Details; (3) Quality Indicators for Center-Based Programs; (4) Indicators…

  2. Improving embryo quality in assisted reproduction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mantikou, E.


    The goal of this thesis was to improve embryo quality in assisted reproductive technologies by gaining more insight into human preimplantation embryo development and by improving in vitro culture conditions. To do so, we investigated an intriguing feature of the human preimplantation embryo, i.e. it

  3. Big Earth Data Initiative: Metadata Improvement: Case Studies (United States)

    Kozimor, John; Habermann, Ted; Farley, John


    Big Earth Data Initiative (BEDI) The Big Earth Data Initiative (BEDI) invests in standardizing and optimizing the collection, management and delivery of U.S. Government's civil Earth observation data to improve discovery, access use, and understanding of Earth observations by the broader user community. Complete and consistent standard metadata helps address all three goals.

  4. The European initiative for quality management in lung cancer care

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Blum, Torsten G; Rich, Anna; Baldwin, David


    . The Task Force undertook four projects: 1) a narrative literature search on quality management of lung cancer; 2) a survey of national and local infrastructure for lung cancer care in Europe; 3) a benchmarking project on the quality of (inter)national lung cancer guidelines in Europe; and 4) a feasibility...... study of prospective data collection in a pan-European setting. There is little peer-reviewed literature on quality management in lung cancer care. The survey revealed important differences in the infrastructure of lung cancer care in Europe. The European guidelines that were assessed displayed wide...... countries. The European Initiative for Quality Management in Lung Cancer Care has provided the first comprehensive snapshot of lung cancer care in Europe....

  5. Current concept review: quality and process improvement in orthopedics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pinney SJ


    Full Text Available Stephen J Pinney,1 Alexandra E Page,2 David S Jevsevar,3 Kevin J Bozic4 1Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, St Mary's Medical Center, San Francisco, CA, USA; 2Orthopaedic Surgery, AAOS Health Care Systems Committee, San Diego, CA, USA; 3Department of Orthopaedics, Geisel School of Medicine, Dartmouth University, Hanover, NH, USA; 4Department of Surgery and Perioperative Care, Dell Medical School at the University of Texas, Austin, TX, USAAbstract: Multiple health care stakeholders are increasingly scrutinizing musculoskeletal care to optimize quality and cost efficiency. This has led to greater emphasis on quality and process improvement. There is a robust set of business strategies that are increasingly being applied to health care delivery. These quality and process improvement tools (QPITs have specific applications to segments of, or the entire episode of, patient care. In the rapidly changing health care world, it will behoove all orthopedic surgeons to have an understanding of the manner in which care delivery processes can be evaluated and improved. Many of the commonly used QPITs, including checklist initiatives, standardized clinical care pathways, lean methodology, six sigma strategies, and total quality management, embrace basic principles of quality improvement. These principles include focusing on outcomes, optimizing communication among health care team members, increasing process standardization, and decreasing process variation. This review summarizes the common QPITs, including how and when they might be employed to improve care delivery. Keywords: clinical care pathway, musculoskeletal care, outcomes, quality management, six sigma, lean thinking

  6. Improving Quality of Emergency Care Through Integration of Mental Health. (United States)

    Okafor, Martha; Wrenn, Glenda; Ede, Victor; Wilson, Nana; Custer, William; Risby, Emile; Claeys, Michael; Shelp, Frank E; Atallah, Hany; Mattox, Gail; Satcher, David


    The goal of this study was to better integrate emergency medical and psychiatric care at a large urban public hospital, identify impact on quality improvement metrics, and reduce healthcare cost. A psychiatric fast track service was implemented as a quality improvement initiative. Data on disposition from the emergency department from January 2011 to May 2012 for patients impacted by the pilot were analyzed. 4329 patients from January 2011 to August 2011 (pre-intervention) were compared with 4867 patients from September 2011 to May 2012 (intervention). There was a trend of decline on overall quality metrics of time to triage and time from disposition to discharge. The trend analysis of the psychiatric length of stay and use of restraints showed significant reductions. Integrated emergency care models are evidence-based approach to ensuring that patients with mental health needs receive proper and efficient treatment. Results suggest that this may also improve overall emergency department's throughput.

  7. Improving energy audit process and report outcomes through planning initiatives (United States)

    Sprau Coulter, Tabitha L.

    Energy audits and energy models are an important aspect of the retrofit design process, as they provide project teams with an opportunity to evaluate a facilities current building systems' and energy performance. The information collected during an energy audit is typically used to develop an energy model and an energy audit report that are both used to assist in making decisions about the design and implementation of energy conservation measures in a facility. The current lack of energy auditing standards results in a high degree of variability in energy audit outcomes depending on the individual performing the audit. The research presented is based on the conviction that performing an energy audit and producing a value adding energy model for retrofit buildings can benefit from a revised approach. The research was divided into four phases, with the initial three phases consisting of: 1.) process mapping activity - aimed at reducing variability in the energy auditing and energy modeling process. 2.) survey analysis -- To examine the misalignment between how industry members use the top energy modeling tools compared to their intended use as defined by software representatives. 3.) sensitivity analysis -- analysis of the affect key energy modeling inputs are having on energy modeling analysis results. The initial three phases helped define the need for an improved energy audit approach that better aligns data collection with facility owners' needs and priorities. The initial three phases also assisted in the development of a multi-criteria decision support tool that incorporates a House of Quality approach to guide a pre-audit planning activity. For the fourth and final research phase explored the impacts and evaluation methods of a pre-audit planning activity using two comparative energy audits as case studies. In each case, an energy audit professionals was asked to complete an audit using their traditional methods along with an audit which involved them first




    The right to education, despite being present in the Brazilian legislation, still suffers on being applied. This article deals with the dimensions of the education quality, which are at the same time understandable to the population and judicially enforceable.  It analyzes the relevant legislation, and based on different authors, discusses the fundamental right to education and the pattern of the quality in Student Cost Initial Quality (CAQi) in Portuguese acronym). It also discusses the righ...

  9. Teaching Quality Improvement Through a Book Club

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin Doolittle


    Full Text Available Introduction: Quality Improvement projects are an important part of residency education in the United States and are required for accreditation by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education. Participation in standard chart-based quality improvement had failed to generate excitement among residents in our program. The objective of our innovation was to inspire interest in quality improvement among our residents. Methods: Our residency program instituted a book discussion group. Attendance and participation of attendees was recorded, and residents were sent a follow-up survey one month after the activity to gauge their impressions. Results: Out of 16 residents in the program, 12 attended the discussion group, and all attendees participated in the discussion. The follow-up survey revealed that 10/11 (91% of respondents had read at least part of the book and 11/11 (100% wanted to have another book discussion group in the upcoming year. Conclusion: We believe that the use of a book discussion group can be a novel, inspiring strategy to teach quality improvement in a residency program.

  10. Fostering Quality Improvement in EHDI Programs (United States)

    Bradham, Tamala S.; Hoffman, Jeff; Houston, K. Todd; Guignard, Gayla Hutsell


    State coordinators of early hearing detection and intervention (EHDI) programs completed a strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, or SWOT, analysis that consisted of 12 evaluative areas of EHDI programs. For the quality improvement area, a total of 218 items were listed by 47 EHDI coordinators, and themes were identified in each…

  11. The European initiative for quality management in lung cancer care. (United States)

    Blum, Torsten G; Rich, Anna; Baldwin, David; Beckett, Paul; De Ruysscher, Dirk; Faivre-Finn, Corinne; Gaga, Mina; Gamarra, Fernando; Grigoriu, Bogdan; Hansen, Niels C G; Hubbard, Richard; Huber, Rudolf Maria; Jakobsen, Erik; Jovanovic, Dragana; Konsoulova, Assia; Kollmeier, Jens; Massard, Gilbert; McPhelim, John; Meert, Anne-Pascale; Milroy, Robert; Paesmans, Marianne; Peake, Mick; Putora, Paul-Martin; Scherpereel, Arnaud; Schönfeld, Nicolas; Sitter, Helmut; Skaug, Knut; Spiro, Stephen; Strand, Trond-Eirik; Taright, Samya; Thomas, Michael; van Schil, Paul E; Vansteenkiste, Johan F; Wiewrodt, Rainer; Sculier, Jean-Paul


    Lung cancer is the commonest cause of cancer-related death worldwide and poses a significant respiratory disease burden. Little is known about the provision of lung cancer care across Europe. The overall aim of the Task Force was to investigate current practice in lung cancer care across Europe. The Task Force undertook four projects: 1) a narrative literature search on quality management of lung cancer; 2) a survey of national and local infrastructure for lung cancer care in Europe; 3) a benchmarking project on the quality of (inter)national lung cancer guidelines in Europe; and 4) a feasibility study of prospective data collection in a pan-European setting. There is little peer-reviewed literature on quality management in lung cancer care. The survey revealed important differences in the infrastructure of lung cancer care in Europe. The European guidelines that were assessed displayed wide variation in content and scope, as well as methodological quality but at the same time there was relevant duplication. The feasibility study demonstrated that it is, in principle, feasible to collect prospective demographic and clinical data on patients with lung cancer. Legal obligations vary among countries. The European Initiative for Quality Management in Lung Cancer Care has provided the first comprehensive snapshot of lung cancer care in Europe.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M.Rajendar Reddy


    Full Text Available Maize (Zea mays is a major food and animal feed worldwide and occupies a relevant place in the world economy and trade as an industrial grain crop. Currently more than 70% of maize production is used for food and feed; therefore, knowledge of genes involved in grain structure and chemical is important for improving the nutritional and food-making properties of maize. It is a good source of carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins and minerals but deficient in two essential amino acids, Viz., lysine and tryptophan. To overcome this problem and to improve the above quality characters the maize breeders have followed different strategies like opaque 2, QPM and development of transgenic maize with improved quality characters. Finally we can conclude that the conventional breeding techniques and now plant biotechnology are helping meet the growing demand for food production, nutrition security while preserving our environment for future generations

  13. Burnishing of rotatory parts to improve surface quality (United States)

    Celaya, A.; López de Lacalle, L. N.; Albizuri, J.; Alberdi, R.


    In this paper, the use of rolling burnishing process to improve the final quality of railway and automotive workpieces is studied. The results are focused on the improvement of the manufacturing processes of rotary workpieces used in railway and automotion industry, attending to generic target of achieving `maximum surface quality with minimal process time'. Burnishing is a finishing operation in which plastic deformation of surface irregularities occurs by applying pressure through a very hard element, a roller or a ceramic ball. This process gives additional advantages to the workpiece such as good surface roughness, increased hardness and high compressive residual stresses. The effect of the initial turning conditions on the final burnishing operation has also been studied. The results show that feeds used in the initial rough turning have little influence in the surface finish of the burnished workpieces. So, the process times of the combined turning and burnishing processes can be reduced, optimizing the shaft's machining process.

  14. Pediatric CT quality management and improvement program

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Larson, David B.; Chan, Frandics P.; Newman, Beverley; Fleischmann, Dominik [Stanford University School of Medicine, Department of Radiology, Stanford, CA (United States); Molvin, Lior Z. [Stanford Hospital and Clinics, Stanford, CA (United States); Wang, Jia [Stanford University, Environmental Health and Safety, Stanford, CA (United States)


    Modern CT is a powerful yet increasingly complex technology that continues to rapidly evolve; optimal clinical implementation as well as appropriate quality management and improvement in CT are challenging but attainable. This article outlines the organizational structure on which a CT quality management and improvement program can be built, followed by a discussion of common as well as pediatric-specific challenges. Organizational elements of a CT quality management and improvement program include the formulation of clear objectives; definition of the roles and responsibilities of key personnel; implementation of a technologist training, coaching and feedback program; and use of an efficient and accurate monitoring system. Key personnel and roles include a radiologist as the CT director, a qualified CT medical physicist, as well as technologists with specific responsibilities and adequate time dedicated to operation management, CT protocol management and CT technologist education. Common challenges in managing a clinical CT operation are related to the complexity of newly introduced technology, of training and communication and of performance monitoring. Challenges specific to pediatric patients include the importance of including patient size in protocol and dose considerations, a lower tolerance for error in these patients, and a smaller sample size from which to learn and improve. (orig.)

  15. Continuous quality improvement: improving hemodialysis catheter patency using urokinase. (United States)

    Northsea, C


    Opportunities for improvements in patient outcomes through applied continuous quality improvement (CQI) programs are endless and exciting. Improving vascular access outcomes has been a long-standing clinical problem for hemodialysis patients and the nephrology team. During the past few years there has been a dramatic increase in the use of dialysis catheters as permanent accesses for hemodialysis patients. All hemodialysis with dialysis catheters are at risk for catheter occlusion. An innovative, 2-year CQI program was developed, implemented, and designed to improve dialysis catheter patency rates with the use of urokinase. The CQI program resulted in a number of clinical outcomes that were beneficial to the patients and dialysis staff, and were cost-effective to the program.

  16. Oil Products Quality Improvement by Adsorption Method

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kulash K. Syrmanova


    Full Text Available Petroleum takes the leading place in fuel and energy sector. It is a basis of fuel and energy balance of advanced countries economics. Light oil proven reserves reducing is a general trend of modern oil industry development. Almost the entire increase in reserves is due to viscous heavy sour oil [1-2]. Nowadays quality of the most important oil products is a crucial problem in refinery industry. The problem of oil products quality is connected with their using and operation in engines and machines. Requirements increasing to stability and effective technics maintenance leads to oil products running abilities significant hardening. In order to protect the environment, the task to obtain oil products with improved environmental properties was assigned. Properties of the oil determine the direction and condition of its processing and directly affect the quality of the oil products [3-4].

  17. Mexico City Air Quality Research Initiative; Volume 5, Strategic evaluation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)



    Members of the Task HI (Strategic Evaluation) team were responsible for the development of a methodology to evaluate policies designed to alleviate air pollution in Mexico City. This methodology utilizes information from various reports that examined ways to reduce pollutant emissions, results from models that calculate the improvement in air quality due to a reduction in pollutant emissions, and the opinions of experts as to the requirements and trade-offs that are involved in developing a program to address the air pollution problem in Mexico City. The methodology combines these data to produce comparisons between different approaches to improving Mexico City`s air quality. These comparisons take into account not only objective factors such as the air quality improvement or cost of the different approaches, but also subjective factors such as public acceptance or political attractiveness of the different approaches. The end result of the process is a ranking of the different approaches and, more importantly, the process provides insights into the implications of implementing a particular approach or policy.

  18. Quality assurance in the treatment of colorectal cancer: the EURECCA initiative. (United States)

    Breugom, A J; Boelens, P G; van den Broek, C B M; Cervantes, A; Van Cutsem, E; Schmoll, H J; Valentini, V; van de Velde, C J H


    Colorectal cancer is one of the most common cancers in Europe. Over the past few decades, important advances have been made in screening, staging and treatment of colorectal cancer. However, considerable variation between and within European countries remains, which implies that further improvements are possible. The most important remaining question now is: when are we, health care professionals, delivering the best available care to patients with colon or rectal cancer? Currently, quality assurance is a major issue in colorectal cancer care and quality assurance awareness is developing in almost all disciplines involved in the treatment of colorectal cancer patients. Quality assurance has shown to be effective in clinical trials. For example, standardisation and quality control were introduced in the Dutch TME trial and led to marked improvements of local control and survival in rectal cancer patients. Besides, audit structures can also be very effective in monitoring cancer management and national audits showed to further improve outcome in colorectal cancer patients. To reduce the differences between European countries, an international, multidisciplinary, outcome-based quality improvement programme, European Registration of Cancer Care (EURECCA), has been initiated. In the near future, the EURECCA dataset will perform research on subgroups as elderly patients or patients with comorbidities, which are often excluded from trials. For optimal colorectal cancer care, quality assurance in guideline formation and in multidisciplinary team management is also of great importance. The aim of this review was to create greater awareness and to give an overview of quality assurance in the management of colorectal cancer.

  19. 2.2 Continuous quality improvement. (United States)

    Rohlin, Madeleine; Schaub, Rob M H; Holbrook, Peter; Leibur, Edvitar; Lévy, Gérard; Roubalikova, Lenka; Nilner, Maria; Roger-Leroi, Valerie; Danner, Gunter; Iseri, Haluk; Feldman, Cecile


    Continuous quality improvement (CQI) can be envisaged as a circular process of goal-setting, followed by external and internal evaluations resulting in improvements that can serve as goals for a next cycle. The need for CQI is apparent, because of public accountability, maintaining European standards and the improvement of dental education. Many examples are known where recommendations from both external and internal evaluation are used for the improvement of dental education. Unfortunately, the implementation of the recommendations is inconsistent, rarely systematic and usually not transparent. This section agreed that it is essential to apply CQI in a structured, systematic and transparent way if we are to improve and maintain the quality of dental education. A model is proposed which includes three aspects: a) the process of CQI; b) the subjects to which CQI should be applied; and c) the management tools to govern CQI. It is stressed, that CQI is a process that can be applied in any dental school irrespective of curriculum or educational approach within the relevant context of the country or the region. The approach needs to recognize the complexity and the need to balance a quality improvement with accountability. A CQI system is also constrained in any organization by the attitudes and values of the staff. Inevitably there has to be a wide range in the application of CQI. Nevertheless, an agreed model on CQI might enhance convergence towards higher standards of dental education. The process of CQI can be supported by developments in information and communication technology (ICT): collection of data, identifying the steps in CQI, formats of reports, etc. The section was set, as one of its tasks, to advise on the development of a network based on a number of case studies on the application of CQI in dental education.

  20. Improvements in geomagnetic observatory data quality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Reda, Jan; Fouassier, Danielle; Isac, Anca;


    Geomagnetic observatory practice and instrumentation has evolved significantly over the past 150 years. Evolution continues to be driven by advances in technology and by the need of the data user community for higher-resolution, lower noise data in near-real time. Additionally, collaboration...... between observatories and the establishment of observatory networks has harmonized standards and practices across the world; improving the quality of the data product available to the user. Nonetheless, operating a highquality geomagnetic observatory is non-trivial. This article gives a record...... of the current state of observatory instrumentation and methods, citing some of the general problems in the complex operation of geomagnetic observatories. It further gives an overview of recent improvements of observatory data quality based on presentation during 11th IAGA Assembly at Sopron and INTERMAGNET...

  1. A Model to Improve the Quality Products

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hasan GOKKAYA


    Full Text Available The topic of this paper is to present a solution who can improve product qualityfollowing the idea: “Unlike people who have verbal skills, machines use "sign language"to communicate what hurts or what has invaded their system’. Recognizing the "signs"or symptoms that the machine conveys is a required skill for those who work withmachines and are responsible for their care and feeding. The acoustic behavior of technical products is predominantly defined in the design stage, although the acoustic characteristics of machine structures can be analyze and give a solution for the actual products and create a new generation of products. The paper describes the steps intechnological process for a product and the solution who will reduce the costs with the non-quality of product and improve the management quality.

  2. A Model to Improve the Quality Products



    The topic of this paper is to present a solution who can improve product quality following the idea: “Unlike people who have verbal skills, machines use "sign language" to communicate what hurts or what has invaded their system’. Recognizing the "signs" or symptoms that the machine conveys is a required skill for those who work with machines and are responsible for their care and feeding. The acoustic behavior of technical products is predominantly defined in the design stage, although the ac...

  3. Applying PPM to ERP Maintenance and Continuous Improvement Initiatives

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    El-Tal, Nada Maria; Fonnesbæk, Majbrit; Kræmmergaard, Pernille


    Enterprise Resource Planning Systems (ERP) has been implemented in many companies during the last decade and has gained an increasing significance. For many companies it means that the focus is no longer on how to implement the ERP system, but rather on how to maintain and improve the system...... to gain business benefits from the systems. However the ERP literature on how to do this is limited. The purpose of this article is to explore how Project Portfolio Management (PPM) from the Research and Development (R&D) literature can be applied to an ERP second wave context, when companies...... are to prioritize and select maintenance and continuous improvement initiatives. This is done by reviewing the existing literature in the fields of PPM from R&D literature and then by reviewing the existing literature about maintenance and improvement initiatives in the ERP literature, after which the two...

  4. The SQUIRE (Standards for QUality Improvement Reporting Excellence) guidelines for quality improvement reporting: explanation and elaboration (United States)

    Ogrinc, G; Mooney, S E; Estrada, C; Foster, T; Goldmann, D; Hall, L W; Huizinga, M M; Liu, S K; Mills, P; Neily, J; Nelson, W; Pronovost, P J; Provost, L; Rubenstein, L V; Speroff, T; Splaine, M; Thomson, R; Tomolo, A M; Watts, B


    As the science of quality improvement in health care advances, the importance of sharing its accomplishments through the published literature increases. Current reporting of improvement work in health care varies widely in both content and quality. It is against this backdrop that a group of stakeholders from a variety of disciplines has created the Standards for QUality Improvement Reporting Excellence, which we refer to as the SQUIRE publication guidelines or SQUIRE statement. The SQUIRE statement consists of a checklist of 19 items that authors need to consider when writing articles that describe formal studies of quality improvement. Most of the items in the checklist are common to all scientific reporting, but virtually all of them have been modified to reflect the unique nature of medical improvement work. This “Explanation and Elaboration” document (E & E) is a companion to the SQUIRE statement. For each item in the SQUIRE guidelines the E & E document provides one or two examples from the published improvement literature, followed by an analysis of the ways in which the example expresses the intent of the guideline item. As with the E & E documents created to accompany other biomedical publication guidelines, the purpose of the SQUIRE E & E document is to assist authors along the path from completion of a quality improvement project to its publication. The SQUIRE statement itself, this E & E document, and additional information about reporting improvement work can be found at PMID:18836062

  5. Improving tomato seed quality- challenges and possibilities

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Shrestha, Santosh


    The thesis investigates the possibility of using single seed near-infrared (NIR) spectroscopy, multispectral imaging (MSI) and NIR hyperspectral imaging (NIR-HSI) in combination with chemometrics for rapid determination of the tomato seed quality. The results of the PhD study are compiled in four...... manuscripts (MS). These non-destructive methods show the potential of sorting tomato seeds as per their viability and varietal identity. The results are discussed in the context of possible contribution from these methods in the improvement of the seed quality in Nepal. In MS I, potential application of NIR...... spectroscopy in combination with chemometrics for prediction of tomato seed viability is demonstrated. The work in MS I also emphasises on identifying the important NIR spectral regions for the chemometric model that are relevant to the separation of viable and non-viable seeds. The NIR-HIS method was also...

  6. Improving wind power quality with energy storage

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Claus Nygaard


    The results of simulation of the influence of energy storage on wind power quality are presented. Simulations are done using a mathematical model of energy storage. Results show the relation between storage power and energy, and the obtained increase in minimum available power from the combination...... of wind and storage. The introduction of storage enables smoothening of wind power on a timescale proportional to the storage energy. Storage does not provide availability of wind power at all times, but allows for a certain fraction of average power in a given timeframe to be available with high...... probability. The amount of storage capacity necessary for significant wind power quality improvement in a given period is found to be 20 to 40% of the energy produced in that period. The necessary power is found to be 80 to 100% of the average power of the period....


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacek Karcz


    Full Text Available The functioning of courier companies is a vital component of modern trade. E-commerce services are changing the way of shopping. Along with them, also courier services change and become more advance. Customers of courier companies become more aware of quality, which they should expect from supplier of these services. The article presents the result of the research of the effectiveness and the timelines of deliveries realized by one of the terminals of a leading courier operator in Poland. The survey involved 55 courier routes over the course of 10 business days. The author analyses weak points of the supply chain and presents two solutions, which may improve quality of delivery processes.

  8. Improving the quality of care for patients with hypertension in Moshupa District, Botswana: Quality improvement cycle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cathy Kande


    Full Text Available Background: Although there are no prevalence studies on hypertension in Botswana, this condition is thought to be common and the quality of care to be poor.Aim: The aim of this project was to assess and improve the quality of primary care forhypertension.Setting: Moshupa clinic and catchment area, Botswana.Methods: Quality improvement cycle.Results: Two hundred participants were included in the audit. Sixty-eight per cent were women with a mean age of 55 years. In the baseline audit none of the target standards were met. During the re-audit six months later, six out of nine structural target standards, five out of 11 process target standards and one out of two outcome target standards were achieved. Statistically-significant improvement in performance (p < 0.05 was shown in 10 criteria although the target standard was not always met. In the re-audit, the target of achieving blood pressure control (< 140/90 in 70% of patients was achieved.Conclusion: The quality of care for hypertension was suboptimal in our setting. Simple interventions were designed and implemented to improve the quality of care. These interventions led to significant improvement in structural and process criteria. A corresponding significant improvement in the control of blood pressure was also seen.

  9. Using genomics to improve fruit quality. (United States)

    Meneses, Claudio; Orellana, Ariel


    New fruit varieties are needed to satisfy consumers, and the industry is facing new challenges in order to respond to these demands. The emergence of genomic tools is releasing information on polymorphisms that can be utilized to expedite breeding processes in species that are difficult to breed, given the long periods of time required to get new varieties. The present review describes the current stages of the ongoing efforts that are being taken to apply these technologies to obtain varieties with improved fruit quality in species of the family Rosaceae.

  10. Improving the quality of nursing documentation: An action research project

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elisha M. Okaisu


    Full Text Available Background: Documentation is an important function of professional nursing practise. In spite of numerous improvement efforts globally, inadequate documentation continues to be reported as nurse authors investigate barriers and challenges. Objectives: The project aimed to improve nurses’ documentation of their patient assessments at the CURE Children’s Hospital of Uganda in order to enhance the quality of nursing practise. Method: An action research methodology, using repeated cycles of planning, intervention, reflection and modification, was used to establish best practise approaches in this context for improving nurses’ efficacy in documenting assessments in the patient record. The researchers gathered data from chart audits, literature reviews and key informant interviews. Through analysis and critical reflection, these data informed three cycles of systems and practise modifications to improve the quality of documentation. Results: The initial cycle revealed that staff training alone was insufficient to achievethe project goal. To achieve improved documentation, broader changes were necessary, including building a critical mass of competent staff, redesigned orientation and continuing education, documentation form redesign, changes in nurse skill mix, and continuous leadership support. Conclusion: Improving nursing documentation involved complex challenges in this setting and demanded multiple approaches. Evidence-based practise was the foundation of changes in systems required to produce visible improvement in practise. The involved role of leadership in these efforts was very important.


    Rai, Arti K


    The available evidence indicates that patent quality, particularly in the area of software, needs improvement. This Article argues that even an agency as institutionally constrained as the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office ("PTO") could implement a portfolio of pragmatic, cost-effective quality improvement strategies. The argument in favor of these strategies draws upon not only legal theory and doctrine but also new data from a PTO software examination unit with relatively strict practices. Strategies that resolve around Section 112 of the patent statute could usefully be deployed at the initial examination stage. Other strategies could be deployed within the new post-issuance procedures available to the agency under the America Invents Act. Notably, although the strategies the Article discusses have the virtue of being neutral as to technology, they are likely to have a very significant practical impact in the area of software.

  12. Improving Quality of Care in Peptic Ulcer Bleeding

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rosenstock, Steffen Jais; Møller, Morten H; Larsson, Heidi


    OBJECTIVES:The treatment of peptic ulcer bleeding (PUB) is complex, and mortality remains high. We present results from a nationwide initiative to monitor and improve the quality of care (QOC) in PUB.METHODS:All Danish hospitals treating PUB patients between 2004 and 2011 prospectively registered...... demographic, clinical, and prognostic data. QOC was evaluated using eight process and outcome indicators, including time to initial endoscopy, hemostasis obtainment, proportion undergoing surgery, rebleeding risks, and 30-day mortality.RESULTS:A total of 13,498 PUB patients (median age 74 years) were included.......10-1.61)), and fewer patients underwent open surgery (4% vs. 6%, RR 0.72 (0.59-0.87)). After controlling for time changes in prognostic factors, rebleeding rates improved (13% vs. 18%, adjusted RR 0.77 (0.66-0.91)). Crude 30-day mortality was unchanged (11% vs. 11%), whereas adjusted mortality decreased...

  13. Improving diabetic foot screening at a primary care clinic: A quality improvement project (United States)

    Allen, Michelle L.; Gunst, Colette


    Background Foot screening is an important part of diabetic care as it prevents significant morbidity, loss of function and mortality from diabetic foot complications. However, foot screening is often neglected. Aim This project was aimed at educating health care workers (HCWs) in a primary health care clinic to increase diabetic foot screening practices. Setting A primary health care clinic in the Western Cape province of South Africa Methods A quality improvement project was conducted. HCWs’ needs were assessed using a questionnaire. This was followed by focus group discussions with the HCWs, which were recorded, transcribed and assessed using a general inductive approach. An intervention was designed based on common themes. Staff members were trained on foot screening and patient information pamphlets and screening tools were made available to all clinic staff. Thirty-two consecutive diabetic patient folders were audited to compare screening in 2013 with that in 2014 after initiation of the quality improvement cycle. Results HCWs’ confidence in conducting foot screening using the diabetic foot assessment questionnaire improved markedly after training. Diabetic foot screening practices increased from 9% in 2013 to 69% in 2014 after the first quality improvement cycle. A strengths, opportunities, aspirations and results (SOAR) analysis showed promise for continuing quality improvement cycles. Conclusion The findings showed a significant improvement in the number of diabetic patients screened. Using strategic planning with appreciative intent based on SOAR, proved to be motivational and can be used in the planning of the next cycle. PMID:27608673

  14. Biospecimen Reporting for Improved Study Quality (BRISQ)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    National Cancer Institute; Jewell, Ph.D., Scott D.; Seijo, M.S., Edward; Kelly, Ph.D., Andrea; Somiari, Ph.D., Stella; B.Chir., M.B.; McShane, Ph.D., Lisa M.; Clark, M.D., Douglas; Greenspan, M.D., Renata; Hayes, M.D., Daniel F.; Hainaut, Ph.D., M.S., Pierre; Kim, Paula; Mansfield, Ph.D., Elizabeth; Potapova, Ph.D., Olga; Riegman, Ph.D., Peter; Rubinstein, Ph.D., Yaffa; Weier, Ph.D., Heinz-Ulrich; Zhu, Ph.D., Claire; Moore, Ph.D., Helen M.; Vaught, Ph.D., Jim; Watson, Peter


    Human biospecimens are subjected to collection, processing, and storage that can significantly alter their molecular composition and consistency. These biospecimen preanalytical factors, in turn, influence experimental outcomes and the ability to reproduce scientific results. Currently, the extent and type of information specific to the biospecimen preanalytical conditions reported in scientific publications and regulatory submissions varies widely. To improve the quality of research that uses human tissues, it is crucial that information on the handling of biospecimens be reported in a thorough, accurate, and standardized manner. The Biospecimen Reporting for Improved Study Quality (BRISQ) recommendations outlined herein are intended to apply to any study in which human biospecimens are used. The purpose of reporting these details is to supply others, from researchers to regulators, with more consistent and standardized information to better evaluate, interpret, compare, and reproduce the experimental results. The BRISQ guidelines are proposed as an important and timely resource tool to strengthen communication and publications on biospecimen-related research and to help reassure patient contributors and the advocacy community that their contributions are valued and respected.

  15. Biospecimen Reporting for Improved Study Quality

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Moore, Ph.D., Helen M.; Kelly, Ph.D., Andrea B.; Jewell, Ph.D., Scott D.; McShane, Ph.D., Lisa M.; Clark, M.D., Douglas P.; Greenspan, M.D., Renata; Hayes, M.D., Daniel F.; Hainaut, Ph.D., Pierre; Kim, Paula; Mansfield, Ph.D., Elizabeth A.; Potapova, Ph.D., Olga; Riegman, Ph.D., Peter; Rubinstein, Ph.D., Yaffa; Seijo, M.S., Edward; Somiari, Ph.D., Stella; Chir., B; Weier, Ph.D., Heinz-Ulrich; Zhu, Ph.D., Claire; Vaught, Ph.D., Jim; Watson,M.B., Peter


    Human biospecimens are subjected to collection, processing, and storage that can significantly alter their molecular composition and consistency. These biospecimen preanalytical factors, in turn, influence experimental outcomes and the ability to reproduce scientific results. Currently, the extent and type of information specific to the biospecimen preanalytical conditions reported in scientific publications and regulatory submissions varies widely. To improve the quality of research that uses human tissues, it is crucial that information on the handling of biospecimens be reported in a thorough, accurate, and standardized manner. The Biospecimen Reporting for Improved Study Quality (BRISQ) recommendations outlined herein are intended to apply to any study in which human biospecimens are used. The purpose of reporting these details is to supply others, from researchers to regulators, with more consistent and standardized information to better evaluate, interpret, compare, and reproduce the experimental results. The BRISQ guidelines are proposed as an important and timely resource tool to strengthen communication and publications on biospecimen-related research and to help reassure patient contributors and the advocacy community that their contributions are valued and respected.

  16. Biospecimen Reporting for Improved Study Quality (BRISQ)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Moore, Ph.D., Helen M.; Kelly Ph.D., Andrea; Jewell Ph.D., Scott D.; McShane Ph.D., Lisa M.; Clark M.D., Douglas P.; Greenspan M.D., Renata; Hayes M.D., Daniel F.; Hainaut Ph.D.,, Pierre; Kim, Paula; Mansfield Ph.D., Elizabeth; Potapova Ph.D., Olga; Riegman Ph.D., Peter; Rubinstein Ph.D., Yaffa; Seijo M.S., Edward; Somiari Ph.D., Stella; Watson M.B., Peter; Weier Ph.D., Heinz-Ulrich; Zhu Ph.D., Claire; Vaught Ph.D., Jim


    Human biospecimens are subject to a number of different collection, processing, and storage factors that can significantly alter their molecular composition and consistency. These biospecimen preanalytical factors, in turn, influence experimental outcomes and the ability to reproduce scientific results. Currently, the extent and type of information specific to the biospecimen preanalytical conditions reported in scientific publications and regulatory submissions varies widely. To improve the quality of research utilizing human tissues it is critical that information regarding the handling of biospecimens be reported in a thorough, accurate, and standardized manner. The Biospecimen Reporting for Improved Study Quality (BRISQ) recommendations outlined herein are intended to apply to any study in which human biospecimens are used. The purpose of reporting these details is to supply others, from researchers to regulators, with more consistent and standardized information to better evaluate, interpret, compare, and reproduce the experimental results. The BRISQ guidelines are proposed as an important and timely resource tool to strengthen communication and publications around biospecimen-related research and help reassure patient contributors and the advocacy community that the contributions are valued and respected.

  17. Quality Improvement in Initial Teacher Training and Co-operation in Distance Education in Asia: Interim Statement and Action Plans. Commonwealth Secretariat-UNESCO Regional Roundtable (Penang, Malaysia, October 24-November 4, 1992). (United States)

    United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization, Bangkok (Thailand).

    This publication reports on the Commonwealth Secretariat UNESCO Regional Roundtable, which was held in Penang, Malaysia as a follow-up to the 1992 Colloquium on Alternatives in Initial Teacher Training, held in Colombo, Sri Lanka. There were 28 participants from Bangladesh, India, Maldives, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines,…

  18. CMS Nonpayment Policy, Quality Improvement, and Hospital-Acquired Conditions: An Integrative Review. (United States)

    Bae, Sung-Heui

    This integrative review synthesized evidence on the consequences of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) nonpayment policy on quality improvement initiatives and hospital-acquired conditions. Fourteen articles were included. This review presents strong evidence that the CMS policy has spurred quality improvement initiatives; however, the relationships between the CMS policy and hospital-acquired conditions are inconclusive. In future research, a comprehensive model of implementation of the CMS nonpayment policy would help us understand the effectiveness of this policy.

  19. Quality improvement in neurology: dementia management quality measures. (United States)

    Odenheimer, Germaine; Borson, Soo; Sanders, Amy E; Swain-Eng, Rebecca J; Kyomen, Helen H; Tierney, Samantha; Gitlin, Laura; Forciea, Mary Ann; Absher, John; Shega, Joseph; Johnson, Jerry


    Professional and advocacy organizations have long urged that dementia should be recognized and properly diagnosed. With the passage of the National Alzheimer's Project Act in 2011, an Advisory Council for Alzheimer's Research, Care, and Services was convened to advise the Department of Health and Human Services. In May 2012, the Council produced the first National Plan to address Alzheimer's disease, and prominent in its recommendations is a call for quality measures suitable for evaluating and tracking dementia care in clinical settings. Although other efforts have been made to set dementia care quality standards, such as those pioneered by RAND in its series Assessing Care of Vulnerable Elders (ACOVE), practitioners, healthcare systems, and insurers have not widely embraced implementation. This executive summary (full manuscript available at reports on a new measurement set for dementia management developed by an interdisciplinary Dementia Measures Work Group (DWG) representing the major national organizations and advocacy organizations concerned with the care of individuals with dementia. The American Academy of Neurology (AAN), the American Geriatrics Society, the American Medical Directors Association, the American Psychiatric Association, and the American Medical Association-convened Physician Consortium for Performance Improvement led this effort. The ACOVE measures and the measurement set described here apply to individuals whose dementia has already been identified and properly diagnosed. Although similar in concept to ACOVE, the DWG measurement set differs in several important ways; it includes all stages of dementia in a single measure set, calls for the use of functional staging in planning care, prompts the use of validated instruments in patient and caregiver assessment and intervention, highlights the relevance of using palliative care concepts to guide care before the advanced stages of illness, and provides evidence-based support

  20. A decade of improvement: New York State fluid milk quality. (United States)

    Martin, N H; Carey, N R; Murphy, S C; Wiedmann, M; Boor, K J


    The microbiological and sensory qualities of New York State (NYS) fluid milk products were assessed as part of an ongoing fluid milk quality program. Commercially packaged pasteurized fluid milk samples were collected twice a year over the 10-yr period from 2001 to 2010 from 14 NYS dairy processing facilities and analyzed at the Milk Quality Improvement Program (MQIP) laboratory. Each sample was tested throughout refrigerated storage (6°C) on day initial, 7, 10, and 14 for standard plate count (SPC), coliform count (CC), and sensory quality. Over the 10-yr period, the percentage of samples with bacterial numbers below the Pasteurized Milk Ordinance (PMO) limit of 20,000 cfu/mL at d 14 postprocessing ranged from a low of 21.1% in 2002 to a high of 48.6% in 2010. Percent samples positive for coliforms during that same period ranged from a high of 26.6% in 2002 to a low of 7.5% in 2007. Mean d 14 sensory scores ranged from a low of 6.0 in 2002 to a high of 7.3 in 2007. Samples contaminated with coliforms after pasteurization have significantly higher SPC counts and significantly lower sensory scores on d 14 of shelf-life than those not contaminated with coliforms. Product factors such as fat level were not significantly associated with SPC, CC, or sensory quality of the product, whereas the factor processing plant significantly affected overall product quality. This study demonstrates that overall fluid milk quality in NYS, as determined by microbiological and sensory analyses, has improved over the last decade, and identifies some challenges that remain.

  1. Making quality improvement stick and stay: Two lines of insurance. (United States)

    Weaver, Lynda; Bossé, Isabelle; Sinclair, Dionne; Blais, Bernard; Pereira, José


    This article examines issues related to sustaining Quality Improvement (QI) initiatives in a Canadian subacute care hospital and recommends strategies to address them. The authors define two levels of sustainability, the QI project and the corporate/organizational and how they influence a LEADS (Lead Self, Engage Others, Achieve Results, Develop Coalition and System Transformation) culture. The authors then reflect on the differing factors for QI sustainability and present them under five essential categories of accountability, education, communication, monitoring and reporting, and structure and processes.

  2. Early Palliative Care Improves Patients' Quality of Life (United States)

    ... fullstory_160885.html Early Palliative Care Improves Patients' Quality of Life Also increases chances of having end-of-life ... incurable cancer helps patients cope and improves their quality of life, a new study shows. It also leads to ...

  3. SF Bay Water Quality Improvement Fund: Projects and Accomplishments (United States)

    San Francisco Bay Water Quality Improvement Fund (SFBWQIF) projects listed here are part of an EPA competitive grant program to improve SF Bay water quality focused on restoring impaired waters and enhancing aquatic resources.

  4. Foliage Plants for Improving Indoor Air Quality (United States)

    Wolverton, B. C.


    NASA's research with foliage houseplants during the past 10 years has produced a new concept in indoor air quality improvement. This new and exciting technology is quite simple. Both plant leaves and roots are utilized in removing trace levels of toxic vapors from inside tightly sealed buildings. Low levels of chemicals such as carbon monoxide and formaldehyde can be removed from indoor environments by plant leaves alone, while higher concentrations of numerous toxic chemicals can be removed by filtering indoor air through the plant roots surrounded by activated carbon. The activated carbon absorbs large quantities of the toxic chemicals and retains them until the plant roots and associated microorganisms degrade and assimilate these chemicals.

  5. Coaching for Quality Improvement: Lessons Learned from Quality Rating and Improvement Systems (QRIS). Research Brief (United States)

    Tout, Kathryn; Isner, Tabitha; Zaslow, Martha


    Coaching and other on-site, individualized professional development strategies (consultation, mentoring, and technical assistance) are promising approaches to support the application of new teaching practices and overall quality improvement among practitioners in early care and education settings. This Research Brief summarizes a recent report…

  6. Improving High School Physics Through An Outreach Initiative (United States)

    Zettili, Nouredine


    We want to discuss our outreach initiative at Jacksonville State University designed to help improve the teaching of physics at a number of high schools in Northeast Alabama. This initiative is part of Project IMPACTSEED (IMproving Physics And Chemistry Teaching in SEcondary Education), a No-Child Left Behind grant funded by the Alabama Commission on Higher Education. This project is motivated by a major pressing local need: A large number of high school physics teachers teach out of field. IMPACTSEED is designed to achieve a double aim: (a) to make physics and chemistry understandable and fun to learn within a hands-on, inquiry-based setting; (b) to overcome the fear-factor for physics and chemistry among students. Through a two-week long summer institute, a series of weekend workshops designed to help bring technology into physics classrooms, onsite support, and a hotline, we have been providing year-round support to the physics/chemistry teachers in this area. IMPACTSEED aims at providing our students with a physics/chemistry education that enjoys a great deal of continuity and consistency from high school to college.

  7. Developing the protocol for the evaluation of the health foundation's 'engaging with quality initiative' - an emergent approach. (United States)

    Soper, Bryony; Buxton, Martin; Hanney, Stephen; Oortwijn, Wija; Scoggins, Amanda; Steel, Nick; Ling, Tom


    In 2004 a UK charity, The Health Foundation, established the 'Engaging with Quality Initiative' to explore and evaluate the benefits of engaging clinicians in quality improvement in healthcare. Eight projects run by professional bodies or specialist societies were commissioned in various areas of acute care. A developmental approach to the initiative was adopted, accompanied by a two level evaluation: eight project self-evaluations and a related external evaluation. This paper describes how the protocol for the external evaluation was developed. The challenges faced included large variation between and within the projects (in approach, scope and context, and in understanding of quality improvement), the need to support the project teams in their self-evaluations while retaining a necessary objectivity, and the difficulty of evaluating the moving target created by the developmental approach adopted in the initiative. An initial period to develop the evaluation protocol proved invaluable in helping us to explore these issues.

  8. Developing the protocol for the evaluation of the health foundation's 'engaging with quality initiative' – an emergent approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Scoggins Amanda


    Full Text Available Abstract In 2004 a UK charity, The Health Foundation, established the 'Engaging with Quality Initiative' to explore and evaluate the benefits of engaging clinicians in quality improvement in healthcare. Eight projects run by professional bodies or specialist societies were commissioned in various areas of acute care. A developmental approach to the initiative was adopted, accompanied by a two level evaluation: eight project self-evaluations and a related external evaluation. This paper describes how the protocol for the external evaluation was developed. The challenges faced included large variation between and within the projects (in approach, scope and context, and in understanding of quality improvement, the need to support the project teams in their self-evaluations while retaining a necessary objectivity, and the difficulty of evaluating the moving target created by the developmental approach adopted in the initiative. An initial period to develop the evaluation protocol proved invaluable in helping us to explore these issues.

  9. Teaching quality essentials: the effectiveness of a team-based quality improvement curriculum in a tertiary health care institution. (United States)

    Majka, Andrew J; Cook, Katlyn E; Lynch, Stacia L; Garovic, Vesna D; Ghosh, Amit K; West, Colin P; Feyereisn, Wayne L; Paat, John J; Williams, Brandon J; Hale, Curt W; Botz, Catherine T; Phul, Ashley E; Mueller, Paul S


    A unique quality improvement (QI) curriculum was implemented within the Division of General Internal Medicine to improve QI knowledge through multidisciplinary, team-based education, which also met the QI requirement for the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) Maintenance of Certification (MOC) and the Mayo Quality Fellows program. Participants completed up to 4 QI learning modules, including pretest and posttest assessments. A participant who successfully completed all 4 modules received certification as a Silver Quality Fellow and credit toward the quality requirement for ABIM MOC. Of 62 individuals invited to participate, 33 (53%) completed all 4 modules and corresponding pretests and posttests. Participants substantially improved knowledge in all 4 quality modules. Study group participants' pretest scores averaged 71.0%, and their posttest scores averaged 92.7%. Posttest scores of reference group participants compared favorably, averaging 89.2%. Initial assessments showed substantial knowledge improvements and successful implementation of staff-developed QI projects.

  10. Doctor Who? A Quality Improvement Project to Assess and Improve Patients' Knowledge of Their Inpatient Physicians. (United States)

    Broderick-Forsgren, Kathleen; Hunter, Wynn G; Schulteis, Ryan D; Liu, Wen-Wei; Boggan, Joel C; Sharma, Poonam; Thomas, Steven; Zaas, Aimee; Bae, Jonathan


    Background Patient-physician communication is an integral part of high-quality patient care and an expectation of the Clinical Learning Environment Review program. Objective This quality improvement initiative evaluated the impact of an educational audit and feedback intervention on the frequency of use of 2 tools-business cards and white boards-to improve provider identification. Methods This before-after study utilized patient surveys to determine the ability of those patients to name and recognize their physicians. The before phase began in July 2013. From September 2013 to May 2014, physicians received education on business card and white board use. Results We surveyed 378 patients. Our intervention improved white board utilization (72.2% postintervention versus 54.5% preintervention, P < .01) and slightly improved business card use (44.4% versus 33.7%, P = .07), but did not improve physician recognition. Only 20.3% (14 of 69) of patients could name their physician without use of the business card or white board. Data from all study phases showed the use of both tools improved patients' ability to name physicians (OR = 1.72 and OR = 2.12, respectively; OR = 3.68 for both; P < .05 for all), but had no effect on photograph recognition. Conclusions Our educational intervention improved white board use, but did not result in improved patient ability to recognize physicians. Pooled data of business cards and white boards, alone or combined, improved name recognition, suggesting better use of these tools may increase identification. Future initiatives should target other barriers to usage of these types of tools.

  11. Continuous quality improvement of colorectal cancer screening

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Mariusz; Madalinski


    Quality assurance is a key issue in colorectal cancer screening, because effective screening is able to improve primary prevention of the cancer. The quality measure may be described in terms:how well the screening test tells who truly has a disease (sensitivity) and who truly does not have a disease (specificity). This paper raises concerns about identification of the optimal screening test for colorectal cancer. Colonoscopy vs flexible sigmoidoscopy in colorectal cancer screening has been a source of ongoing debate. A multicentre randomised controlled trial comparing flexible sigmoidoscopy with usual care showed that flexible sigmoidoscopy screening is able to diminish the incidence of distal and proximal colorectal cancer, and also mortality related to the distal colorectal cancer. However, colonoscopy provides a more complete examination and remains the more sensitive exam than flexible sigmoidoscopy. Moreover, colonoscopy with polypectomy significantly reduces colorectal cancer incidence and colorectal cancer-related mortality in the general population. The article considers the relative merits of both methods and stresses an ethical aspect of patient’s involvement in decision-making. Patients should be informed not only about tests tolerability and risk of endoscopy complications, but also that different screening tests for bowel cancer have different strength to exclude colonic cancer and polyps. The authorities calculate effectiveness and costs of the screening tests, but patients may not be interested in statistics regarding flexible sigmoidoscopy screening and from an ethical point of view, they have the right to chose colonoscopy, which is able to exclude a cancer and precancerous lesions in the whole large bowel.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B.P. Mahesh


    Full Text Available Quality has become one of the most important customer decision factors in the selection among the competing product and services. Consequently, understanding and improving quality is a key factor leading to business success, growth and an enhanced competitive position. Hence quality improvement program should be an integral part of the overall business strategy. According to TQM, the effective way to improve the Quality of the product or service is to improve the process used to build the product. Hence, TQM focuses on process, rather than results as the results are driven by the processes. Many techniques are available for quality improvement. Statistical Process Control (SPC is one such TQM technique which is widely accepted for analyzing quality problems and improving the performance of the production process. This article illustrates the step by step procedure adopted at a soap manufacturing company to improve the Quality by reducing process variability using Statistical Process Control.

  13. Achieving the Health Care Financing Administration limits by quality improvement and quality control. A real-world example. (United States)

    Engebretson, M J; Cembrowski, G S


    With the enactment of the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments of 1988 (CLIA 88), the federal government is now using proficiency testing as the primary indicator of laboratory quality. Laboratories with proficiency test failures are now at risk of a variety of harsh penalties including large monetary fines and suspension of operations. To minimize the risk of failed proficiency testing, we initiated a continuous quality improvement program in our general chemistry laboratory in conjunction with the use of a new survey-validated quality control product. This article describes the quality improvement program and our success in reducing the long-term random error in general chemistry. Despite our improvement program, significant analytical errors (greater than 30% of the CLIA limits) still exist in analytes measured by our chemistry analyzer. These errors are present in nearly the same analytes measured by other common chemistry analyzers indicating the need for improvement in their design and manufacture.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ganciu Mihaela


    Full Text Available In light of permanent education, physical education and sports activities should be integrated throughout life. The objective of the research is to improve the quality of life of older people to the initiation of maintenance programs by simple methods, reliable and inexpensive. Therapeutic strategies will be adapted practitioners age, associated diseases, profession. The sample under investigation comprised 30 elderly people who participated in two gymnastics lessons a week and a society dance lesson. Inspection methods that I used: bibliographic study, experimental method, survey method and statistical method - mathematical and graphical representation. Quality of life assessment was done by assessing exercise capacity, the survey method and the call routed. Through a sustained program and rhythmic exercise improves cardiovascular activity, as evidenced by increased exercise capacity by lowering resting heart rate, a major component of cardiovascular disease prevention. Decrease abdominal fat and increased muscle tone abdominal favorable effects on biomechanics of the lumbar spine dynamics can thus be considered to be the prevention of back pain. In summary the study conducted, in order to highlight the benefits of the sport for optimal physical condition and fight aging, it can be concluded that physical activity has a beneficial role for the body, both physically and mentally. Survey conducted among people aged III revealed the following: Practicing the sport of gymnastics in a systematic, consistent results in improving health and fitness as well as comfort, good mood, optimism, improving intellectual activity. In short, we can say that these people the sport of gymnastics has improved quality of life.

  15. Danish initiatives to improve the safety of meat products

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wegener, Henrik Caspar


    pathogens which are resistant to antibiotics has been a new area of attention in the recent decade, and recently, the increasing globalization of the domestic food supply has called for a complete rethinking of the national food safety strategies. The implementations of a ‘‘case-by-case” risk assessment......During the last two decades the major food safety problems in Denmark, as determined by the number of human patients, has been associated with bacterial infections stemming from meat products and eggs. The bacterial pathogens causing the majority of human infections has been Salmonella...... and Campylobacter, and to a lesser extent Yersinia, Escherichia coli O157 and Listeria. Danish initiatives to improve the safety of meat products have focused on the entire production chain from the farm to the consumer, with a special emphasis on the pre-harvest stage of production. The control of bacterial...

  16. Initial application of digital tomosynthesis to improve brachytherapy treatment planning (United States)

    Baydush, Alan H.; Mirzaei McKee, Mahta; King, June; Godfrey, Devon J.


    We present preliminary investigations that examine the feasibility of incorporating volumetric images generated using digital tomosynthesis into brachytherapy treatment planning. The Integrated Brachytherapy Unit (IBU) at our facility consists of an L-arm, C-arm isocentric motion system with an x-ray tube and fluoroscopic imager attached. Clinically, this unit is used to generate oblique, anterior-posterior, and lateral images for simple treatment planning and dose prescriptions. Oncologists would strongly prefer to have volumetric data to better determine three dimensional dose distributions (dose-volume histograms) to the target area and organs at risk. Moving the patient back and forth to CT causes undo stress on the patient, allows extensive motion of organs and treatment applicators, and adds additional time to patient treatment. We propose to use the IBU imaging system with digital tomosynthesis to generate volumetric patient data, which can be used for improving treatment planning and overall reducing treatment time. Initial image data sets will be acquired over a limited arc of a human-like phantom composed of real bones and tissue equivalent material. A brachytherapy applicator will be incorporated into one of the phantoms for visualization purposes. Digital tomosynthesis will be used to generate a volumetric image of this phantom setup. This volumetric image set will be visually inspected to determine the feasibility of future incorporation of these types of images into brachytherapy treatment planning. We conclude that initial images using the tomosynthesis reconstruction technique show much promise and bode well for future work.

  17. Nonformal Education in Improving Quality of Life of Underprivileged Children

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abdullah Al Mamun


    Full Text Available This study explores the role of Non-formal Primary Education (NFPE in improving the quality of the life of underprivileged children in Bangladesh considering their economic, health, environmental issues and life skills. It uses a mixed method approach of research where three NGOs which run NFPE programs were selected purposefully. Data were derived from six NGO officers, nine teachers, ninety students and eighteen guardians by using two sets of questionnaires for NGO officers and teachers, an interview schedule for guardians and 9 focus group discussions with the students. The findings show that there is no income generating program initiated by the organizations for the learners along with education. So, the scope of their income has reduced. But their daily life behavior and skills have improved. Besides, their awareness on health and environmental issues have increased. The findings lead to some recommendations which will give insights to policy makers and professionals engaged in this field.

  18. 40 CFR Appendix B to Part 132 - Great Lakes Water Quality Initiative (United States)


    ... 40 Protection of Environment 21 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Great Lakes Water Quality Initiative B... WATER QUALITY GUIDANCE FOR THE GREAT LAKES SYSTEM Pt. 132, App. B Appendix B to Part 132—Great Lakes Water Quality Initiative Methodology for Deriving Bioaccumulation Factors Great Lakes States and...

  19. Laboratory system strengthening and quality improvement in Ethiopia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tilahun M. Hiwotu


    Full Text Available Background: In 2010, a National Laboratory Strategic Plan was set forth in Ethiopia to strengthen laboratory quality systems and set the stage for laboratory accreditation. As a result, the Strengthening Laboratory Management Toward Accreditation (SLMTA programme was initiated in 45 Ethiopian laboratories.Objectives: This article discusses the implementation of the programme, the findings from the evaluation process and key challenges.Methods: The 45 laboratories were divided into two consecutive cohorts and staff from each laboratory participated in SLMTA training and improvement projects. The average amount of supportive supervision conducted in the laboratories was 68 hours for cohort I and two hoursfor cohort II. Baseline and exit audits were conducted in 44 of the laboratories and percent compliance was determined using a checklist with scores divided into zero- to five-star ratinglevels.Results: Improvements, ranging from < 1 to 51 percentage points, were noted in 42 laboratories, whilst decreases were recorded in two. The average scores at the baseline and exit audits were 40% and 58% for cohort I (p < 0.01; and 42% and 53% for cohort II (p < 0.01,respectively. The p-value for difference between cohorts was 0.07. At the exit audit, 61% ofthe first and 48% of the second cohort laboratories achieved an increase in star rating. Poor awareness, lack of harmonisation with other facility activities and the absence of a quality manual were challenges identified.Conclusion: Improvements resulting from SLMTA implementation are encouraging. Continuous advocacy at all levels of the health system is needed to ensure involvement of stakeholders and integration with other improvement initiatives and routine activities.

  20. Initiatives for the improvement of continuous management training

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jon Landeta


    Full Text Available Purpose. This work aims to present, from the company viewpoint, a structured account of management proposals and practices directed toward improving the intensity and effectiveness of continuous management training (CMT. Design/methodology/approach. The article takes as its main theoretical referents the Theory of Human Capital, the Resource-Based Vision and the contributions made via the new institutional economy with regard to the problems of information asymmetry between companies, employees and training providers and completes the proposals that derive from this theoretical approach. To do this, experience-based contributions are collected from a selection of company training and HR managers from twelve Basque companies characterised by their strong investment in management training. The methodology used was qualitative and obtained by different qualitative techniques: Focus Groups, Nominal Groups and the Delphi Method, which make up the so-called Hybrid Delphi. Findings and implications. The proposals are aimed at the main agents in training activity: training providers, associations and public agents engaged in management training and, particularly, companies themselves. The initiatives seek above all to increase training market transparency, to improve mutual commitments between companies and managers, and to link training and development with culture and strategic management, so that firms make optimal investment in management training. Originality/value. The methodology used is original, and the contributions are consistent with the theory, have a proven practical utility, and are presented in a hierarchy, which facilitates decision making.

  1. Improving quality of care among COPD outpatients in Denmark 2008-2011

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tøttenborg, Sandra Søgaard; Lange, P.; Thomsen, R.W.;


    OBJECTIVE: To examine whether the quality of care among Danish patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) has improved since the initiation of a national multidisciplinary quality improvement program. METHODS: We conducted a nationwide, population-based prospective cohort study...... a substantial improvement in the quality of care of COPD in Danish hospitals following the initiation of a national multidisciplinary quality improvement program in 2008. In the forthcoming years, it will be interesting to observe if this will translate into a better prognosis of Danish patients with COPD....... using data from the Danish Clinical Register of COPD (DrCOPD). Since 2008 the register has systematically monitored and audited the use of recommended processes of COPD care. RESULTS: Substantial improvements were observed for all processes of care and registration fulfillment increased to well above 85...

  2. Nursing Leader Collaboration to Drive Quality Improvement and Implementation Science. (United States)

    Ryan, Rosemary W; Harris, Karen K; Mattox, Lisa; Singh, Olivine; Camp, Melanie; Shirey, Maria R


    Nursing leadership opportunities to improve quality and align resources in health care exist. An estimated 18% of United States gross domestic product is spent on health care delivery systems that produce poor outcomes. The purpose of this article was to describe how quality improvement and implementation science initiatives enhance outcomes using nursing leadership strategies that play an integral role in aligning key colleagues to drive the collaborative process. A critical appraisal of the literature was conducted, which supports the importance of evidenced-based practice improvement, collaborative change process, and professional role of nursing leadership. Limited evidence exists related to practice strategies for nursing leaders to implement sustainable change at the unit level for successful alignment of resources. Strategies based on Rogers' Diffusion of Innovation Theory are recommended to address the gap in the literature. The strategies aim to increase meaningful knowledge or the "why," create a tipping point, and implement sustainable change starting with the end in mind. Nurse leaders are a central component for driving alignment and implementing change at the unit level. Uses of the described evidenced-based strategies have implications for nursing practice, education, and scholarship.

  3. Improving Data Quality for Pavement Management System



    The Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) has developed a pavement management StreetSaver program with more than 400 users in the United States. MTC uses the program to evaluate street and road condition and perform maintenance needs assessments for the 109 cities and counties in the San Francisco Bay Area. Quality pavement condition survey data is a critical component of a pavement management system. MTC has augmented a new quality acceptance (QA) program as part of its Quality Data M...

  4. Good air quality in offices improves productivity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fanger, Povl Ole


    Three recent independent studies have documented that the quality of indoor air has a significant and positive influence or? the productivity of office workers. A combined analysis of the results of the three studies shows a significant relationship between productivity and perceived indoor air...... quality. The impact on productivity justifies a much higher indoor air quality than the minimum levels prescribed in present standards and guidelines. One way of providing air of high quality for people to breathe, without involving excessive ventilation rates and energy use, is to provide "personalized...... air" to each individual. The application of this concept is discussed in this paper: (C) 2000 Journal of Mechanical Engineering. All rights reserved....

  5. Good air quality in offices improves productivity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fanger, Povl Ole


    Three recent independent studies have documented that the quality of indoor air has a significant and positive influence on the productivity of office workers. A combined analysis of the results of the three studies shows a significant relationship between productivity and perceived indoor air...... quality. The impact on productivity justifies a much higher indoor air quality than the minimum levels prescribed in present standards and guidelines. One way of providing air of high quality for people to breathe, without involving excessive ventilation rates and energy use, is to provide "personalized...... air" to each individual. The application of this concept is discussed....

  6. Improvement of quality service based on common benchmarks and indicators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pohaydak, Olha Bohdanivna


    Full Text Available Consider ways to improve the quality management system based on common criteria and indicators for evaluating the quality of products, works and services in housing and domestic service.

  7. Improving Quality Higher Education in Nigeria: The Roles of Stakeholders (United States)

    Asiyai, Romina Ifeoma


    This paper discusses the roles of stakeholders in improving quality of university education in Nigeria. Internal and external stakeholders are identified and the various roles they could play in improving the quality of university education are discussed. The paper contends that continuous and holistic improvement in university education system…

  8. Do farm audits improve milk quality?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Flores-Miyamoto, A.; Reij, M.W.; Velthuis, A.G.J.


    Milk quality is assessed using bulk milk analysis and by farm audits in the Netherlands. However, the extent of the effect that dairy farm audits have on milk quality is unknown. Data from over 13,000 audits performed on 12,855 dairy farms from February 2006 to April 2008 were merged with laboratory

  9. Guidelines for appraisal and publication of PDSA quality improvement. (United States)

    Speroff, Theodore; James, Brent C; Nelson, Eugene C; Headrick, Linda A; Brommels, Mats


    Plan-do-study-act (PDSA) quality improvement is the application of the scientific method to implement and test the effects of change ideas on the performance of the health care system. Users of quality improvement could benefit with markers to gauge the "best" science. Four core questions can determine the value of a quality improvement study: Is the quality improvement study pertinent and relevant? Are the results valid? Are appropriate criteria used to interpret the results? Will the study help you with your practice or organization of care? A set of guidelines is provided to help answer these questions. Similar guidelines exist for randomized clinical trials and clinical-epidemiologic observational studies. Analogous to these existing research guidelines, the PDSA quality improvement guidelines will provide researchers and reviewers with succinct standards of methodological rigor to assist in critical appraisal of quality improvement protocols and publications.

  10. Clinical performance feedback and quality improvement opportunities for perioperative physicians

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kaye AD


    Full Text Available Alan David Kaye,1 Olutoyin J Okanlawon,2 Richard D Urman21Department of Anesthesiology, Louisiana State University School of Medicine, New Orleans, LA, 2Department of Anesthesiology, Perioperative and Pain Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston MA, USAAbstract: Clinical performance feedback is an important component of the ongoing development and education of health care practitioners. For physicians, feedback about their clinical practice and outcomes is central to developing both confidence and competence at all stages of their medical careers. Cultural and financial infrastructures need to be in place, and the concept of feedback needs to be readily embraced and encouraged by clinical leadership and other stakeholders. The "buy-in" includes the expectation and view that feedback occurs on a routine basis, and those engaged in the process are both encouraged to participate and held accountable. Feedback must be part of an overarching quality improvement and physician education agenda; it is not meant to be an isolated, fragmented initiative that is typically undermined by lack of resources or systemic barriers to gaining improvement within programs. Effective feedback should be an integral part of clinical practice. Anesthesiologists and other perioperative physicians are identifying specialty-specific indicators that can be used when creating a broader quality improvement agenda. Placing a more immediate formal feedback strategy that focuses on goal-oriented behavior is rapidly becoming a mainstay. Physicians may use their individual feedback reports for reflection and designing personal development plans as lifelong learners and leaders in improving patient care.Keywords: physician education, outcomes measurement, performance improvement, anesthesiology

  11. Improving initial conditions for cosmological N-body simulations (United States)

    Garrison, Lehman H.; Eisenstein, Daniel J.; Ferrer, Douglas; Metchnik, Marc V.; Pinto, Philip A.


    In cosmological N-body simulations, the representation of dark matter as discrete `macroparticles' suppresses the growth of structure, such that simulations no longer reproduce linear theory on small scales near kNyquist. Marcos et al. demonstrate that this is due to sparse sampling of modes near kNyquist and that the often-assumed continuum growing modes are not proper growing modes of the particle system. We develop initial conditions (ICs) that respect the particle linear theory growing modes and then rescale the mode amplitudes to account for growth suppression. These ICs also allow us to take advantage of our very accurate N-body code ABACUS to implement second-order Lagrangian perturbation theory (2LPT) in configuration space. The combination of 2LPT and rescaling improves the accuracy of the late-time power spectra, halo mass functions, and halo clustering. In particular, we achieve 1 per cent accuracy in the power spectrum down to kNyquist, versus kNyquist/4 without rescaling or kNyquist/13 without 2LPT, relative to an oversampled reference simulation. We anticipate that our 2LPT will be useful for large simulations where fast Fourier transforms are expensive and that rescaling will be useful for suites of medium-resolution simulations used in cosmic emulators and galaxy survey mock catalogues. Code to generate ICs is available at

  12. How To Improve Software Quality Assurance In Developing Countries

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ali Javed


    Full Text Available Quality is an important factor in software industry. Software quality depends upon the customer satisfaction which can be achieved through applying standards. In this era achieving quality software is very important because of the high customer demands. Developed countries are excelling in software industry and improving day by day. Meanwhile developing countries like Pakistan are struggling with software quality and cannot maintain reputation in International Market. Software Quality lacks due tomany reasons. This paper will address the problems for lacking interest in improving the software quality by higher authorities and software assurance team. We have provided solution to the addressed problems also.

  13. Quality improvement teaching at medical school: a student perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nair P


    Full Text Available Pooja Nair, Ishani Barai, Sunila Prasad, Karishma Gadhvi Department of Medicine, Imperial College School of Medicine, Imperial College London, London, UK Abstract: Guidelines in the UK require all doctors to actively take part in quality improvement. To ease future doctors into the process, formal quality improvement teaching can be delivered during medical school. Keywords: quality improvement, medical school, patient safety, patient satisfaction, medical student, clinical audit

  14. Nationwide quality improvement of cholecystectomy: results from a national database

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Harboe, Kirstine M; Bardram, Linda


    To evaluate whether quality improvements in the performance of cholecystectomy have been achieved in Denmark since 2006, after revision of the Danish National Guidelines for treatment of gallstones....

  15. Quality improvement – rival or ally of practice development?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gavin Lavery


    Full Text Available The majority of nurses, doctors, allied health professionals and other healthcare staff possess a strong desire to provide the best possible care and experience for their patients. Unfortunately, this sometimes falls short of what was planned or intended (Institute of Medicine, 2001, p 23. The gap between care intended and care delivered can be explained by problems with systems and processes and/or people and culture. The narrowing of this gap is the focus of many strategies, methodologies and approaches. Practice development is described as ‘an activity focused on developing people and practice for the ultimate purpose of achieving high-quality person-centred care’ and a ‘methodology that aims to achieve effective workplace cultures that are person-centred’ (Shaw, 2012; Manley et al., 2014. Practice development undoubtedly has a strong focus on people and culture and the potential to change processes and systems. Another approach, widely referred to as quality improvement, aims to improve safety, effectiveness and person-centredness in healthcare using principles proven effective in other industries such as manufacturing – notably car manufacturing (Toyota, oil production, nuclear power and aviation. The fundamental principles of quality improvement for healthcare include making care reliable (every patient receiving care as intended every time, using well-designed processes and reducing variation (agreeing a consistent way to provide care. At first glance this may appear to be an approach suited only to systems and processes. However, better processes, designed by those who use them, resulting in fewer errors and less re-working or working around problems, can reduce stress on staff, offer greater job satisfaction with improved morale and free up time to provide person-centred care. In his report, A Promise to Learn – a Commitment to Act (2013, p 24, Professor Don Berwick says: ‘Mastery of quality and patient safety sciences and

  16. Georgia - Improving General Education Quality, Improved Learning Environment Infrastructure (United States)

    Millenium Challenge Corporation — The school rehabilitation activity seeks to decrease student and teacher absenteeism, increase students’ time on task, and, ultimately, improve learning and labor...

  17. Clinical mentorship of nurse initiated antiretroviral therapy in Khayelitsha, South Africa: a quality of care assessment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ann Green

    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION: To combat the AIDS epidemic and increase HIV treatment access, the South African government implemented a nurse-based, doctor-supported model of care that decentralizes administration of antiretroviral treatment (ART for HIV positive patients through nurse initiated and managed ART. Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF implemented a mentorship programme to ensure successful task-shifting, subsequently assessing the quality of clinical care provided by nurses. METHODS: A before-after cross-sectional study was conducted on nurses completing the mentorship programme in Khayelitsha, South Africa, from February 2011-September 2012. Routine clinical data from 229 patient folders and 21 self-assessment questionnaires was collected to determine the number of patients initiated on ART by nurses; quality of ART management before-after mentorship; patient characteristics for doctor and nurse ART initiations; and nurse self-assessments after mentorship. RESULTS: Twenty one nurses were authorized by one nurse mentor with one part-time medical officer's support, resulting in nurses initiating 77% of ART eligible patients. Improvements in ART management were found for drawing required bloods (91% vs 99%, p = 0.03, assessing adherence (50% vs 78%, p<0.001 and WHO staging (63% vs 91%, p<0.001. Nurse ART initiation indicators were successfully completed at 95-100% for 11 of 16 indicators: clinical presentation; patient weight; baseline blood work (CD4, creatinine, haemoglobin; STI screening; WHO stage, correlating medical history; medications prescribed appropriately; ART start date; and documented return date. Doctors initiated more patients with TB/HIV co-infection and WHO Stage 3 and 4 disease than nurses. Nurse confidence improved for managing HIV-infected children and pregnant women, blood result interpretation and long-term side effects. CONCLUSIONS: Implementation of a clinical mentorship programme in Khayelitsha led to nurse initiation of a

  18. Manufacturing R&D Initiative Lowers Costs and Boosts Quality

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)



    Fact sheet that provides an overview of DOE's Manufacturing R&D Initiative, which supports projects aimed at developing better-performing, lower-cost solid-state lighting while encouraging engineering and manufacturing in the United States.

  19. Quality Improvement in Virtual Higher Education: A Grounded Theory Approach (United States)

    Mahdiuon, Rouhollah; Masoumi, Davoud; Farasatkhah, Maghsoud


    The article aims to explore the attributes of quality and quality improvement including the process and specific actions associated with these attributes--that contribute enhancing quality in Iranian Virtual Higher Education (VHE) institutions. A total of 16 interviews were conducted with experts and key actors in Iranian virtual higher education.…

  20. How to Improve Hotel Service Quality

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)



    This paper states the importance of provide quality service in hotel industry. The key lessons to be gleaned from the present review are:the advanced training design;the development of service culture&service value throughout the organization; and positive attitudes to complaints. It is also important to have a key person in the organization to stimulate and facilitate the whole process.

  1. Monitoring and improving quality of colonoscopy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    S.C. van Doorn


    Colorectal cancer (CRC) is one of the most commonly diagnosed cancers in the western world. High quality colonoscopy has the potential to reduce CRC mortality by detecting carcinomas in early stages and reduce its incidence by detecting and removing its main precursor lesions, adenomas. Variability

  2. From sensor output to improved product quality

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hertog, M.L.A.T.M.; Vollebregt, Martijntje; Unzueta, I.; Hoofman, R.J.O.M.; Lammertyn, J.


    The research conducted in the European PASTEUR project focussed on perishables monitoring through smart tracking of lifetime and quality. The aim was to develop a wireless sensor platform to monitor the environmental conditions of perishable goods in the supply chain between producer and consumer

  3. Semen quality improves marginally during young adulthood

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Perheentupa, Antti; Sadov, Sergey; Rönkä, Riitta


    in several studies. The longitudinal development of semen quality in early adulthood is insufficiently understood. STUDY DESIGN, SIZE, DURATION: A longitudinal follow-up of two cohorts of volunteer young adult Finnish men representing the general population was carried out. Cohorts A (discovery cohort, born...

  4. Does Automated Feedback Improve Writing Quality? (United States)

    Wilson, Joshua; Olinghouse, Natalie G.; Andrada, Gilbert N.


    The current study examines data from students in grades 4-8 who participated in a statewide computer-based benchmark writing assessment that featured automated essay scoring and automated feedback. We examined whether the use of automated feedback was associated with gains in writing quality across revisions to an essay, and with transfer effects…

  5. Nationwide quality improvement of cholecystectomy: results from a national database

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Harboe, Kirstine M; Bardram, Linda


    To evaluate whether quality improvements in the performance of cholecystectomy have been achieved in Denmark since 2006, after revision of the Danish National Guidelines for treatment of gallstones.......To evaluate whether quality improvements in the performance of cholecystectomy have been achieved in Denmark since 2006, after revision of the Danish National Guidelines for treatment of gallstones....

  6. International Accreditations as Drivers of Business School Quality Improvement (United States)

    Bryant, Michael


    Business schools are under pressure to implement continuous improvement and quality assurance processes to remain competitive in a globalized higher education market. Drivers for quality improvement include external, environmental pressures, regulatory bodies such as governments, and, increasingly, voluntary accreditation agencies such as AACSB…

  7. Economic implications of neonatal intensive care unit collaborative quality improvement

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rogowski, JA; Horbar, JD; Plsek, PE; Baker, LS; Deterding, J; Edwards, WH; Hocker, J; Kantak, AD; Lewallen, P; Lewis, W; Lewit, E; McCarroll, CJ; Mujsce, D; Payne, NR; Shiono, P; Soll, RF; Leahy, K


    Objective. To make measurable improvements in the quality and cost of neonatal intensive care using a multidisciplinary collaborative quality improvement model. Design. Interventional study. Data on treatment costs were collected for infants with birth weight 501 to 1500 g for the period of January

  8. Application of Six-Sigma for Data Quality Improvement in an Insurance Company

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohit Panwar


    Full Text Available Abstract Billions of dollars annually is what poor data quality costs Insurance businesses according to the Data Warehousing Institute. Poor data is also the leading cause of many IT project failures. Many companies are designing their data management programs and quality initiatives to deal with this problem of erroneous and inconsistent data. This paper discusses these topics as well as those detailing how companies can improve their data quality using the quality improvement technique of applying Six-Sigma. The method of creating a new initiative for identifying measuring and controlling the data errors is discussed in this paper. Finally the paper ends with a conclusion and expected results and benefits of the technique. The insurance industry is data-dependent. Today carriers and intermediaries are engaged in improving data capture to help them to better manage their business manage their risk and know their customers. Business and regulatory drivers are pushing the industry to manage its data better.

  9. Valuation of improved air quality in Utah County, USA (United States)

    Pope, C. Arden; Miner, F. Dean


    A contingent valuation approach was used to estimate maximum willingness-to-pay for improved air quality in Utah County. Respondents demonstrated a high rate of concern over poor air quality and averaged a willingness-to-pay of 37 per month per household. Noniterative openended questions were used successfully. No information bias was observed but benchmark values did influence bids. Willingness-to-pay for improved air quality was large for both sexes and across all income groups, ages, and occupations.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dusko Pavletic


    Full Text Available The paper expresses base for an operational quality improvement model at the manufacturing process preparation level. A numerous appropriate related quality assurance and improvement methods and tools are identified. Main manufacturing process principles are investigated in order to scrutinize one general model of manufacturing process and to define a manufacturing process preparation level. Development and introduction of the operational quality improvement model is based on a research conducted and results of methods and tools application possibilities in real manufacturing processes shipbuilding and automotive industry. Basic model structure is described and presented by appropriate general algorithm. Operational quality improvement model developed lays down main guidelines for practical and systematic application of quality improvements methods and tools.

  11. Development and initial validation of prescribing quality indicators for patients with chronic kidney disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smits, Kirsten P J; Sidorenkov, Grigory; Bilo, Henk J G; Bouma, Margriet; van Ittersum, Frans J; Voorham, Jaco; Navis, Gerjan; Denig, Petra


    BACKGROUND: Quality assessment is a key element for improving the quality of care. Currently, a comprehensive indicator set for measuring the quality of medication treatment in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) is lacking. Our aim was to develop and validate a set of prescribing quality ind

  12. Understanding Why Quality Initiatives Succeed or Fail: A Sociotechnical Systems Perspective. (United States)

    Wiegmann, Douglas A


    Efforts to implement quality improvements in surgery are notoriously problematic. One needs to look no farther than recent attempts to implement checklists, team training, and surgical briefings. These interventions have been empirically shown to improve team communication and performance. Yet numerous barriers to implementation have limited their broad adoption and use. Apparently, knowing the remedy (intervention) does not translate into knowing how to administer (implement) it. Or in surgical terms, knowing "what" procedure needs to be performed does not necessarily mean that one knows "how" to perform it. Surgeons serve a vital leadership role in driving quality and patient safety initiatives in the operating room. Achieving success requires both an in-depth understanding of the intervention and the complex dynamics of the elements involved in the implementation process. To aid in this endeavor, the present article describes a Model for Understanding System Transitions Associated with the Implementation of New Goals (MUSTAING). The model highlights important variables associated with implementation success. It also provides a tool for diagnosing why certain interventions may not have worked as intended so that improvements in the implementation process can be made. Finally, the model offers a general framework for guiding future implementation or "how to" research.

  13. Refractories Quality Improvement for Glass Industry Upgrading

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZENG Dafan


    @@ 1 Glass Industry and Refractories Industry Closely Connect 1.1 Glass Development Drives Refractories Progress Refractories are indispensable to glass industry; the rapid development of glass industry drives the growth of refractories industry. China's glass industry developed slowly before the mid 1980s. The kilns and furnaces were backward and small-scale with furnace life of only 2-3 years; glass was produced with extremely low efficiency and poor quality. During that period, refractories for glass melting furnaces had very limited varieties and inferior quality. The fused cast refractories for advanced glass melting furnaces were imported, for the materials made in China could not meet the requirements, which seriously restrained the technical progress of China's glass industry.

  14. Casting Process Developments for Improving Quality (United States)

    El-Mahallawy, Nahed A.; Taha, Mohamed A.


    This paper presents a short synopsis of the important developments in casting/solidification processes, as well as the important advances in the conventional methods. These developments are discussed related to quality aspects. The position of each process with respect to practice, as well as expected gains in cost, are examined. The paper briefly features the author's work on innovative processes (directional solidification, rheocasting, squeeze-casting and rapid solidification) as well as work of other investigators on developments in conventional methods.

  15. Related Measures on Improving the Teaching Quality of DGED Course

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    JIN Yi; SHAN Hong-bo; WANG Xiao-hong; YU Hai-yan; GE Bin


    Engineering Drawing course is one of the main contents of teaching at most of science and engineering colleges or univer-sities. In this paper, some feasible measures is discussed on improving the teaching quality of Engineering Drawing course from four aspects, including diversified teacher participation and coordinating the teaching process, optimizing the content of teaching and im-proving teaching quality, improving teaching effect and reforming teaching methods, and integrating practice and cultivating practi-cal ability.

  16. Product Quality Improvement Using FMEA for Electric Parking Brake (EPB) (United States)

    Dumitrescu, C. D.; Gruber, G. C.; Tişcă, I. A.


    One of the most frequently used methods to improve product quality is complex FMEA. (Failure Modes and Effects Analyses). In the literature various FMEA is known, depending on the mode and depending on the targets; we mention here some of these names: Failure Modes and Effects Analysis Process, or analysis Failure Mode and Effects Reported (FMECA). Whatever option is supported by the work team, the goal of the method is the same: optimize product design activities in research, design processes, implementation of manufacturing processes, optimization of mining product to beneficiaries. According to a market survey conducted on parts suppliers to vehicle manufacturers FMEA method is used in 75%. One purpose of the application is that after the research and product development is considered resolved, any errors which may be detected; another purpose of applying the method is initiating appropriate measures to avoid mistakes. Achieving these two goals leads to a high level distribution in applying, to avoid errors already in the design phase of the product, thereby avoiding the emergence and development of additional costs in later stages of product manufacturing. During application of FMEA method using standardized forms; with their help will establish the initial assemblies of product structure, in which all components will be viewed without error. The work is an application of the method FMEA quality components to optimize the structure of the electrical parking brake (Electric Parching Brake - E.P.B). This is a component attached to the roller system which ensures automotive replacement of conventional mechanical parking brake while ensuring its comfort, functionality, durability and saves space in the passenger compartment. The paper describes the levels at which they appealed in applying FMEA, working arrangements in the 4 distinct levels of analysis, and how to determine the number of risk (Risk Priority Number); the analysis of risk factors and established

  17. Improvement of Initiating Events Analsis in Low-Power and Shutdown PSA for Korea Standard Nuclear Power Plant

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Park, Jin Jee; Jang, Seung Chul; Lim, Ho Gon


    In this study, we have improved the methodology of the initiating event identification for the KSNP LPSD PSA to complement the deficiency obtained from Review of KSNP LPSD PSA Mode based on ANS LPSD PSA Standard. To improve the quality of initiating event analysis, we integrated three systematic approachs for this purpose such as Master Logic Diagram, the empirical approach using domestic and international operating experience and the engineering approach. And we have identified 22 initiation events finally. We could got a basis and satisfied a structured, systematic process for initiating event identification demanded in ANS LPSD PSA Standard. But the sufficient completeness of initiating event analysis for LPSD PSA, the domestic low power and shutdown operating experience for overhaul and un-planed outages analysis is also needed.

  18. Spica cast care: a collaborative staff-led education initiative for improved patient care. (United States)

    Reed, Cynthia; Carroll, Lee; Baccari, Susan; Shermont, Herminia


    One of the most challenging aspects for nurses caring for incontinent children in spica casts is maintaining healthy skin integrity. Noting an increase in the number of phone calls from parents of discharged children in spica casts concerning diaper rash and skin breakdown, inpatient orthopedics staff nurses lead an interdisciplinary quality improvement and educational initiative. They standardized pediatric spica cast care and education by creating an intranet narrated PowerPoint presentation for staff and parents of children with spica casts. A take-home DVD of this education module is now produced and given to parents, reinforcing nursing discharge teaching and giving parents the opportunity to review these new skills at home as needed. The purpose of this article is to share this experience of improving patient outcomes and empowering other orthopedics nurses to develop creative educational solutions.

  19. Use of Electronic Documentation for Quality Improvement in Hospice (United States)

    Cagle, John G.; Rokoske, Franziska S.; Durham, Danielle; Schenck, Anna P.; Spence, Carol; Hanson, Laura C.


    Little evidence exists on the use of electronic documentation in hospice and its relationship to quality improvement practices. The purposes of this study were to: (1) estimate the prevalence of electronic documentation use in hospice; (2) identify organizational characteristics associated with use of electronic documentation; and (3) determine whether quality measurement practices differed based on documentation format (electronic vs. nonelectronic). Surveys concerning the use of electronic documentation for quality improvement practices and the monitoring of quality-related care and outcomes were collected from 653 hospices. Users of electronic documentation were able to monitor a wider range of quality-related data than users of nonelectronic documentation. Quality components such as advanced care planning, cultural needs, experience during care of the actively dying, and the number/types of care being delivered were more likely to be documented by users of electronic documentation. Use of electronic documentation may help hospices to monitor quality and compliance. PMID:22267819

  20. Participatory Patterns in an International Air Quality Monitoring Initiative

    CERN Document Server

    Sîrbu, Alina; Caminiti, Saverio; De Baets, Bernard; Elen, Bart; Francis, Louise; Gravino, Pietro; Hotho, Andreas; Ingarra, Stefano; Loreto, Vittorio; Molino, Andrea; Mueller, Juergen; Peters, Jan; Ricchiuti, Ferdinando; Saracino, Fabio; Servedio, Vito D P; Stumme, Gerd; Theunis, Jan; Tria, Francesca; Bossche, Joris Van den


    The issue of sustainability is at the top of the political and societal agenda, being considered of extreme importance and urgency. Human individual action impacts the environment both locally (e.g., local air/water quality, noise disturbance) and globally (e.g., climate change, resource use). Urban environments represent a crucial example, with an increasing realization that the most effective way of producing a change is involving the citizens themselves in monitoring campaigns (a citizen science bottom-up approach). This is possible by developing novel technologies and IT infrastructures enabling large citizen participation. Here, in the wider framework of one of the first such projects, we show results from an international competition where citizens were involved in mobile air pollution monitoring using low cost sensing devices, combined with a web-based game to monitor perceived levels of pollution. Measures of shift in perceptions over the course of the campaign are provided, together with insights int...

  1. It Pays to Improve School Quality (United States)

    Hanushek, Eric A.; Ruhose, Jens; Woessmann, Ludger


    Congress passed the Every Student Succeeds Act, supplanting No Child Left Behind and placing responsibility for public school improvement squarely upon each of the 50 states. With the federal government's role in school accountability sharply diminished, it now falls to state and local governments to take decisive action. Even though most…

  2. The ReACH Collaborative--improving quality home care. (United States)

    Boyce, Patricia Simino; Pace, Karen B; Lauder, Bonnie; Solomon, Debra A


    Research on quality of care has shown that vigorous leadership, clear goals, and compatible incentive systems are critical factors in influencing successful change (Institute of Medicine, 2001). Quality improvement is a complex process, and clinical quality improvement applications are more likely to be effective in organizations that are ready for change and have strong leaders, who are committed to creating and reinforcing a work environment that supports quality goals (Shortell, 1998). Key leadership roles include providing clear and sustained direction, articulating a coherent set of values and incentives to guide group and individual activities, aligning and integrating improvement efforts into organizational priorities, obtaining or freeing up resources to implement improvement activities, and creating a culture of "continuous improvement" that encourages and rewards the pursuit and achievement of shared quality aims (Institute of Medicine, 2001, 70-71). In summary, home health care is a significant and growing sector of the health care system that provides care to millions of vulnerable patients. There seems little doubt that home health agencies want to focus on quality of care issues and provide optimal care to home-based patients. Furthermore, there is a growing awareness of the value for adapting innovative, effective models for improving the culture of home care practice. This awareness stems from the notion that some agencies see quality improvement activities as a way for them to distinguish themselves not only to regulators and customers, but also to meet the cultural and transformational needs to remain viable in a constantly evolving and competitive health care industry.

  3. Quality Improvement ? The Key to Reducing Costs in Pancreatoduodenectomy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Savio George Barreto


    Full Text Available Background With the looming fear of costs for cancer care escalating over the next decade, the general aim of policy makers the world over is directing efforts towards “bending the cost curve”. Pancreatic cancer is on the rise and pancreatoduodenectomy is the only curative option available. The aim of the current report is to analyze the published literature on data addressing the issue of costs in pancreatic cancer surgery (with a focus on pancreatoduodenectomy in an effort to determine how disparate are the lines of investigation of health economics and quality indicators of surgery. Methods A systematic and comprehensive search of major reference databases (MEDLINE, EMBASE, PubMed, and the Cochrane Library was undertaken using a combination of text words “cost”, “pancreatoduodenectomy”, “pancreaticoduodenectomy”, “health care”, “surgery”. The search was restricted to human studies published in literature but was not language restricted. Results The initial search yielded 116 studies of which 25 manuscripts were retrieved for further evaluation. Of the 25 studies retrieved, 7 manuscripts were excluded from the final analysis as the variables analyzed did not significantly influence the costs of pancreatoduodenectomy. The factors most frequently noted (≥2 studies to influence costs of pancreatoduodenectomy were hospital and surgeon volume the occurrence of complications and the implementation of clinical pathways. Conclusions Using pancreatoduodenectomy, as an example, it is evident that the key to ‘bending the cancer cost curve’ is designing strategies to improve quality of the not only the procedure, but the process. Costs and quality cannot be separated. Reduction in costs can, and must only, be achieved by targeting excellence.

  4. Quality Improvement of Liver Ultrasound Images Using Fuzzy Techniques (United States)

    Bayani, Azadeh; Langarizadeh, Mostafa; Radmard, Amir Reza; Nejad, Ahmadreza Farzaneh


    Background: Liver ultrasound images are so common and are applied so often to diagnose diffuse liver diseases like fatty liver. However, the low quality of such images makes it difficult to analyze them and diagnose diseases. The purpose of this study, therefore, is to improve the contrast and quality of liver ultrasound images. Methods: In this study, a number of image contrast enhancement algorithms which are based on fuzzy logic were applied to liver ultrasound images - in which the view of kidney is observable - using Matlab2013b to improve the image contrast and quality which has a fuzzy definition; just like image contrast improvement algorithms using a fuzzy intensification operator, contrast improvement algorithms applying fuzzy image histogram hyperbolization, and contrast improvement algorithms by fuzzy IF-THEN rules. Results: With the measurement of Mean Squared Error and Peak Signal to Noise Ratio obtained from different images, fuzzy methods provided better results, and their implementation - compared with histogram equalization method - led both to the improvement of contrast and visual quality of images and to the improvement of liver segmentation algorithms results in images. Conclusion: Comparison of the four algorithms revealed the power of fuzzy logic in improving image contrast compared with traditional image processing algorithms. Moreover, contrast improvement algorithm based on a fuzzy intensification operator was selected as the strongest algorithm considering the measured indicators. This method can also be used in future studies on other ultrasound images for quality improvement and other image processing and analysis applications. PMID:28077898

  5. Quality Improvement of an Acid Treated Fuel Oil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth Jumoke ETERIGHO


    Full Text Available The work on the quality improvement of fuel oil using acid treatment was carried out. The improvement of the fuel oil was done using sulphuric acid to remove contaminants. Sulphuric acid at different concentrations were mixed with the oil and kept at 45°C for four hours in the agitator vessel to allow reaction to take place. Acidic sludge was then drained off from the agitator and the oil was neutralized with sodium hydroxide. Centrifugation operation was used to extract the sulphonate dispersed in the oil. The treated and untreated oils were characterized for various properties and the results showed that the viscosity, total sulphur of fuel oil decreased from 6.0 to before 5.0 cst after acid treatment and 2.57 to 1.2225% w/w respectively while the flash point increased from 248 to 264°F. The water and sediment content increased from trace before to 0.6 after treatment. In addition, the calorific value increased from initial value of 44,368 to 44,805 and 44,715 kJ/kg at 50% and 75% conc. H2SO4 while decreasing with 85% and 90% conc. H2SO4. However, both carbon residue and ash content decreases with an increase in acid concentration.

  6. Improving collected rainwater quality in rural communities. (United States)

    Garrido, S; Aviles, M; Ramirez, A; Gonzalez, A; Montellano, L; Gonzalez, B; de la Paz, J; Ramirez, R M


    The country of Mexico is facing serious problems with water quality and supply for human use and consumption in rural communities, mainly due to topographic and isolation. In Mexico the average annual precipitation is 1,500 cubic kilometers of water, if 3% of that amount were used, 13 million Mexicans could be supplied with drinking water that they currently do not have access. Considering the limited infrastructure and management in rural communities, which do not receive services from the centralized systems of large cities, a modified pilot multi-stage filtration (MMSF) system was designed, developed, and evaluated for treating collected rainwater in three rural communities, Ajuchitlan and Villa Nicolas Zapata (Morelos State) and Xacxamayo (Puebla State). The efficiencies obtained in the treatment system were: colour and turbidity >93%. It is worth mentioning that the water obtained for human use and consumption complies with the Mexican Standard NOM-127-SSA1-1994.

  7. Improvement of power quality using distributed generation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Moreno-Munoz, A.; Lopez-Rodriguez, M.A.; Flores-Arias, J.M.; Bellido-Outerino, F.J. [Universidad de Cordoba, Departamento A.C., Electronica y T.E., Escuela Politecnica Superior, Campus de Rabanales, E-14071 Cordoba (Spain); de-la-Rosa, J.J.G. [Universidad de Cadiz, Area de Electronica, Dpto. ISA, TE y Electronica, Escuela Politecnica Superior Avda, Ramon Puyol, S/N, E-11202-Algeciras-Cadiz (Spain); Ruiz-de-Adana, M. [Universidad de Cordoba, Departamento de Quimica Fisica y Termodinamica Aplicada, Campus de Rabanales, E-14071 Cordoba (Spain)


    This paper addresses how Distributed Generation (DG), particularly when configured in Combined Heat and Power (CHP) mode, can become a powerful reliability solution in highlight automated factories, especially when integrated with complimentary Power Quality (PQ) measures. The paper presents results from the PQ audit conducted at a highly automated plant over last year. It was found that the main problems for the equipment installed were voltage sags. Among all categories of electrical disturbances, the voltage sag (dip) and momentary interruption are the nemeses of the automated industrial process. The paper analyzes the capabilities of modern electronic power supplies and the convenience of embedded solution. Finally it is addressed the role of the DG/CHP on the reliability of digital factories. (author)

  8. Quality Improvement Policies in a Supply Chain with Stackelberg Games

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gang Xie


    Full Text Available We first analyze quality and price decisions in a supply chain with two Stackelberg games: Manufacturer’s Stackelberg (MS and Supplier’s Stackelberg (SS. Then, we investigate how equilibrium solutions are influenced by proposed quality improvement policies: coordination and manufacturer’s involvement. Also, we derive the conditions under which the policies can be implemented in both MS and SS strategies. Numerical experiments illustrate the problems and several related issues are discussed. The results suggest that proposed quality improvement policies can realize Pareto improvement for the supply chain performance.

  9. Participatory Patterns in an International Air Quality Monitoring Initiative. (United States)

    Sîrbu, Alina; Becker, Martin; Caminiti, Saverio; De Baets, Bernard; Elen, Bart; Francis, Louise; Gravino, Pietro; Hotho, Andreas; Ingarra, Stefano; Loreto, Vittorio; Molino, Andrea; Mueller, Juergen; Peters, Jan; Ricchiuti, Ferdinando; Saracino, Fabio; Servedio, Vito D P; Stumme, Gerd; Theunis, Jan; Tria, Francesca; Van den Bossche, Joris


    The issue of sustainability is at the top of the political and societal agenda, being considered of extreme importance and urgency. Human individual action impacts the environment both locally (e.g., local air/water quality, noise disturbance) and globally (e.g., climate change, resource use). Urban environments represent a crucial example, with an increasing realization that the most effective way of producing a change is involving the citizens themselves in monitoring campaigns (a citizen science bottom-up approach). This is possible by developing novel technologies and IT infrastructures enabling large citizen participation. Here, in the wider framework of one of the first such projects, we show results from an international competition where citizens were involved in mobile air pollution monitoring using low cost sensing devices, combined with a web-based game to monitor perceived levels of pollution. Measures of shift in perceptions over the course of the campaign are provided, together with insights into participatory patterns emerging from this study. Interesting effects related to inertia and to direct involvement in measurement activities rather than indirect information exposure are also highlighted, indicating that direct involvement can enhance learning and environmental awareness. In the future, this could result in better adoption of policies towards decreasing pollution.

  10. Knowledge Translation Interventions to Improve the Timing of Dialysis Initiation (United States)

    Chau, Elaine M. T.; Manns, Braden J.; Garg, Amit X.; Sood, Manish M.; Kim, S. Joseph; Naimark, David; Nesrallah, Gihad E.; Soroka, Steven D.; Beaulieu, Monica; Dixon, Stephanie; Alam, Ahsan; Tangri, Navdeep


    Background: Early initiation of chronic dialysis (starting dialysis with higher vs lower kidney function) has risen rapidly in the past 2 decades in Canada and internationally, despite absence of established health benefits and higher costs. In 2014, a Canadian guideline on the timing of dialysis initiation, recommending an intent-to-defer approach, was published. Objective: The objective of this study is to evaluate the efficacy and safety of a knowledge translation intervention to promote the intent-to-defer approach in clinical practice. Design: This study is a multicenter, 2-arm parallel, cluster randomized trial. Setting: The study involves 55 advanced chronic kidney disease clinics across Canada. Patients: Patients older than 18 years who are managed by nephrologists for more than 3 months, and initiate dialysis in the follow-up period are included in the study. Measurements: Outcomes will be measured at the patient-level and enumerated within a cluster. Data on characteristics of each dialysis start will be determined by linkages with the Canadian Organ Replacement Register. Primary outcomes include the proportion of patients who start dialysis early with an estimated glomerular filtration rate greater than 10.5 mL/min/1.73 m2 and start dialysis in hospital as inpatients or in an emergency room setting. Secondary outcomes include the rate of change in early dialysis starts; rates of hospitalizations, deaths, and cost of predialysis care (wherever available); quarterly proportion of new starts; and acceptability of the knowledge translation materials. Methods: We randomized 55 multidisciplinary chronic disease clinics (clusters) in Canada to receive either an active knowledge translation intervention or no intervention for the uptake of the guideline on the timing of dialysis initiation. The active knowledge translation intervention consists of audit and feedback as well as patient- and provider-directed educational tools delivered at a comprehensive in

  11. The development of a quality assurance project plan for the USEPA dioxin exposure initiative program

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Byrne, C.; Ferrario, J. [Stennis Space Center, MS (USA). USEPA Environmental Chemistry Laboratory


    All projects planned and implemented under the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) Dioxin Exposure Initiative are required to have completed Quality Assurance Projects Plans (QAPPs). EPA Order 5360.1 A2 states, ''All work funded by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that involves the acquisition of environmental data generated from direct measurement activities, collected from other sources, or compiled from computerized data bases and information systems are implemented in accordance with an approved QA Project Plan except under circumstances requiring immediate actions to protect human health and the environment or operations conducted under police powers''. This policy is based on the newly revised national consensus standard, ANSI/ASQC E-4-2004. These QAPPs have proven invaluable in the development and improvement of analytical methodology for dioxin-like compounds over the intervening years and in the verification and validation of the results of dioxin exposure studies.

  12. Software Quality Improvement in the OMC Team

    CERN Document Server

    Maier, Viktor

    Physicists use self-written software as a tool to fulfill their tasks and often the developed software is used for several years or even decades. If a software product lives for a long time, it has to be changed and adapted to external influences. This implies that the source code has to be read, understood and modified. The same applies to the software of the Optics Measurements and Corrections (OMC) team at CERN. Their task is to track, analyze and correct the beams in the LHC and other accelerators. To solve this task, they revert to a self-written software base with more than 150,000 physical lines of code. The base is subject to continuous changes as well. Their software does its job and is effective, but runs regrettably not efficient because some parts of the source code are in a bad shape and has a low quality. The implementation could be faster and more memory efficient. In addition it is difficult to read and understand the code. Source code files and functions are too big and identifiers do not rev...

  13. Process safety improvement--quality and target zero. (United States)

    Van Scyoc, Karl


    Process safety practitioners have adopted quality management principles in design of process safety management systems with positive effect, yet achieving safety objectives sometimes remain a distant target. Companies regularly apply tools and methods which have roots in quality and productivity improvement. The "plan, do, check, act" improvement loop, statistical analysis of incidents (non-conformities), and performance trending popularized by Dr. Deming are now commonly used in the context of process safety. Significant advancements in HSE performance are reported after applying methods viewed as fundamental for quality management. In pursuit of continual process safety improvement, the paper examines various quality improvement methods, and explores how methods intended for product quality can be additionally applied to continual improvement of process safety. Methods such as Kaizen, Poke yoke, and TRIZ, while long established for quality improvement, are quite unfamiliar in the process safety arena. These methods are discussed for application in improving both process safety leadership and field work team performance. Practical ways to advance process safety, based on the methods, are given.

  14. Process safety improvement-Quality and target zero

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Van Scyoc, Karl [Det Norske Veritas (U.S.A.) Inc., DNV Energy Solutions, 16340 Park Ten Place, Suite 100, Houston, TX 77084 (United States)], E-mail:


    Process safety practitioners have adopted quality management principles in design of process safety management systems with positive effect, yet achieving safety objectives sometimes remain a distant target. Companies regularly apply tools and methods which have roots in quality and productivity improvement. The 'plan, do, check, act' improvement loop, statistical analysis of incidents (non-conformities), and performance trending popularized by Dr. Deming are now commonly used in the context of process safety. Significant advancements in HSE performance are reported after applying methods viewed as fundamental for quality management. In pursuit of continual process safety improvement, the paper examines various quality improvement methods, and explores how methods intended for product quality can be additionally applied to continual improvement of process safety. Methods such as Kaizen, Poke yoke, and TRIZ, while long established for quality improvement, are quite unfamiliar in the process safety arena. These methods are discussed for application in improving both process safety leadership and field work team performance. Practical ways to advance process safety, based on the methods, are given.

  15. Examining Pre-School Classroom Quality in a Statewide Quality Rating and Improvement System (United States)

    Jeon, Lieny; Buettner, Cynthia K.; Hur, Eunhye


    Background: Research has documented the importance of high-quality early childhood experiences in preparing children for school. Quality rating and improvement systems (QRIS) have recently emerged in many states as a way to build quality of child care and to promote better child outcomes. Objective: The goal of this study was to determine if…

  16. Improving Quality of Voice Conversion Systems (United States)

    Farhid, M.; Tinati, M. A.

    New improvement scheme for voice conversion are proposed in this paper. We take Human factor cepstral coefficients (HFCC), a modification of MFCC that uses the known relationship between center frequency and critical bandwidth from human psychoacoustics to decouple filter bandwidth from filter spacing, as the basic feature. We propose U/V (Unvoiced/Voiced) decision rule such that two sets of codebooks are used to capture the difference between unvoiced and voiced segments of the source speaker. Moreover, we apply three schemes to refine the synthesized voice, including pitch refinement, energy equalization, and frame concatenation. The acceptable performance of the voice conversion system can be verified through ABX listening test and MOS grad.

  17. Open Schools for improving Equity and Quality Education

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stracke, Christian M.


    Invited Speech at International Lensky Education Forum 2016, Yakutsk, Republic of Sakha, Russian Federation, by Stracke, C. M. (2016, 16 August): "Open Schools for improving Equity and Quality Education"

  18. Improvement of Flow Quality in NAL Chofu Mach 10 Nozzle (United States)

    Lacey, John; Inoue, Yasutoshi; Higashida, Akio; Inoue, Manabu; Ishizaka, Kouichi; Korte, John J.


    As a result of CFD analysis and remachining of the nozzle, the flow quality of the Mach 10 Hypersonic Wind Tunnel at NAL Chofu, Japan was improved. The subsequent test results validated the CFD analytical predictions by NASA and MHL.

  19. Quality Rating and Improvement Systems and Children's Cognitive Development (United States)

    Jeon, Lieny; Buettner, Cynthia K.


    Background: Providing enriched learning environments is important to stimulating children's development in early childhood. Early child-care policymakers in many states in the US have adopted Quality Rating and Improvement Systems (QRIS) as a way to verify quality of child care and to support children's school readiness. Objective: The purpose of…


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Milan Radenkovic


    Full Text Available In this paper, Kaikaku method is presented. The essence of this method is introduction, principles and ways of implementation in the real systems. The main point how Kaikaku method influences on quality. It is presented on the practical example (furniture industry, one way how to implement Kaikaku method and how influence on quality improvement of production process.

  1. Effects of Quality Improvement System for Child Care Centers (United States)

    Ma, Xin; Shen, Jianping; Kavanaugh, Amy; Lu, Xuejin; Brandi, Karen; Goodman, Jeff; Till, Lance; Watson, Grace


    Using multiple years of data collected from about 100 child care centers in Palm Beach County, Florida, the authors studied whether the Quality Improvement System (QIS) made a significant impact on quality of child care centers. Based on a pre- and postresearch design spanning a period of 13 months, QIS appeared to be effective in improving…

  2. A history of industrial statistics and quality and efficiency improvement

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Mast, J.; Coleman, S.; Greenfield, T.; Stewardson, D.; Montgomery, D.C.


    The twentieth century witnessed incredible increases in product quality, while in the same period product priced dropped dramatically. These important improvements in quality and efficiency in industry were the result of innovations in management and engineering. But these developments were supporte

  3. The business case for health-care quality improvement. (United States)

    Swensen, Stephen J; Dilling, James A; Mc Carty, Patrick M; Bolton, Jeffrey W; Harper, Charles M


    The business case for health-care quality improvement is presented. We contend that investment in process improvement is aligned with patients' interests, the organization's reputation, and the engagement of their workforce. Four groups benefit directly from quality improvement: patients, providers, insurers, and employers. There is ample opportunity, even in today's predominantly pay-for-volume (that is, evolving toward value-based purchasing) insurance system, for providers to deliver care that is in the best interest of the patient while improving their financial performance.


    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)



    This paper describes the results of a year-long project, sponsored by the Energy Facility Contractors Group (EFCOG) and designed to improve overall electrical safety performance throughout Department of Energy (DOE)-owned sites and laboratories. As evidenced by focused metrics, the Project was successful primarily due to the joint commitment of contractor and DOE electrical safety experts, as well as significant support from DOE and contractor senior management. The effort was managed by an assigned project manager, using classical project-management principles that included execution of key deliverables and regular status reports to the Project sponsor. At the conclusion of the Project, the DOE not only realized measurable improvement in the safety of their workers, but also had access to valuable resources that will enable them to do the following: evaluate and improve electrical safety programs; analyze and trend electrical safety events; increase electrical safety awareness for both electrical and non-electrical workers; and participate in ongoing processes dedicated to continued improvement.

  5. Quality Improvement in Nursing Homes: Identifying Depressed Residents is Critical to Improving Quality of Life. (United States)

    Crogan, Neval L; Evans, Bronwynne C


    The prevalence of depression in nursing home residents is three to five times higher than in older adults from the community.1 Depression is thought to be related to the gloomy institutionalized environment and an assortment of losses, including those associated with function, independence, social roles, friends and relatives, and past leisure activities.2 Despite the public's increased awareness of depression, it remains underrecognized and undertreated by professionals who care for older residents in nursing homes.3 It seems intuitive that depression must be recognized before it can be treated, yet our national long-term care system continues to utilize an unreliable scale from the Minimum Data Set as its foundation for assessment. Warnings of the scale's inadequacy have been sounded repeatedly almost since its conception4,5 and its potential role in lack of recognition and treatment of depression by nursing home staff, nurse practitioners, and physicians is a troubling one.The purpose of this article is to (1) report the prevalence of depression in a sub-sample of residents from a National Institutes of Health study whose depression was not detected by the MDS and, consequently, was previously untreated, (2) compare their nutritional and functional status with residents whose depressive states were previously detected by the MDS and treated, and (3) recommend quality improvement strategies for identification and treatment of depression in nursing home residents.

  6. X-ray scatter correction method for dedicated breast computed tomography: improvements and initial patient testing (United States)

    Ramamurthy, Senthil; D'Orsi, Carl J.; Sechopoulos, Ioannis


    A previously proposed x-ray scatter correction method for dedicated breast computed tomography was further developed and implemented so as to allow for initial patient testing. The method involves the acquisition of a complete second set of breast CT projections covering 360° with a perforated tungsten plate in the path of the x-ray beam. To make patient testing feasible, a wirelessly controlled electronic positioner for the tungsten plate was designed and added to a breast CT system. Other improvements to the algorithm were implemented, including automated exclusion of non-valid primary estimate points and the use of a different approximation method to estimate the full scatter signal. To evaluate the effectiveness of the algorithm, evaluation of the resulting image quality was performed with a breast phantom and with nine patient images. The improvements in the algorithm resulted in the avoidance of introduction of artifacts, especially at the object borders, which was an issue in the previous implementation in some cases. Both contrast, in terms of signal difference and signal difference-to-noise ratio were improved with the proposed method, as opposed to with the correction algorithm incorporated in the system, which does not recover contrast. Patient image evaluation also showed enhanced contrast, better cupping correction, and more consistent voxel values for the different tissues. The algorithm also reduces artifacts present in reconstructions of non-regularly shaped breasts. With the implemented hardware and software improvements, the proposed method can be reliably used during patient breast CT imaging, resulting in improvement of image quality, no introduction of artifacts, and in some cases reduction of artifacts already present. The impact of the algorithm on actual clinical performance for detection, diagnosis and other clinical tasks in breast imaging remains to be evaluated.

  7. Crossing the quality chasm: lessons from health care quality improvement efforts in England


    Madhok, Rajan


    The second report from the US Institute of Medicine Crossing the Quality Chasm, highlighted the deficiencies in health care quality in the USA, analyzed the contributory factors, and proposed 13 recommendations for improvements. Clearly, the challenges are enormous. Can anything be learned from the experiences of other countries? This article describes the author's experiences of health care quality improvement efforts in the National Health Service in England and their implications for the U...

  8. Rating methodological quality: toward improved assessment and investigation. (United States)

    Moyer, Anne; Finney, John W


    Assessing methodological quality is considered essential in deciding what investigations to include in research syntheses and in detecting potential sources of bias in meta-analytic results. Quality assessment is also useful in characterizing the strengths and limitations of the research in an area of study. Although numerous instruments to measure research quality have been developed, they have lacked empirically-supported components. In addition, different summary quality scales have yielded different findings when they were used to weight treatment effect estimates for the same body of research. Suggestions for developing improved quality instruments include: distinguishing distinct domains of quality, such as internal validity, external validity, the completeness of the study report, and adherence to ethical practices; focusing on individual aspects, rather than domains of quality; and focusing on empirically-verified criteria. Other ways to facilitate the constructive use of quality assessment are to improve and standardize the reporting of research investigations, so that the quality of studies can be more equitably and thoroughly compared, and to identify optimal methods for incorporating study quality ratings into meta-analyses.

  9. [Quality assurance and quality improvement in medical practice. Part 3: Clinical audit in medical practice]. (United States)

    Godény, Sándor


    The first two articles in the series were about the definition of quality in healthcare, the quality approach, the importance of quality assurance, the advantages of quality management systems and the basic concepts and necessity of evidence based medicine. In the third article the importance and basic steps of clinical audit are summarised. Clinical audit is an integral part of quality assurance and quality improvement in healthcare, that is the responsibility of any practitioner involved in medical practice. Clinical audit principally measures the clinical practice against clinical guidelines, protocols and other professional standards, and sometimes induces changes to ensure that all patients receive care according to principles of the best practice. The clinical audit can be defined also as a quality improvement process that seeks to identify areas for service improvement, develop and carry out plans and actions to improve medical activity and then by re-audit to ensure that these changes have an effect. Therefore, its aims are both to stimulate quality improvement interventions and to assess their impact in order to develop clinical effectiveness. At the end of the article key points of quality assurance and improvement in medical practice are summarised.

  10. An Initial Study of Improving English Reading Efficiency

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)



    Reading,as an important medium for human beings to gain knowledge,also plays a major part in the teaching and learning of English.Nevertheless,in practical teaching,we find that the students are quite at a loss at what to do.This article will probe into how to improve the reading efficiency from two aspects:linguistic factors and non-linguistic factors.

  11. Improving Initial Conditions for Cosmological $N$-Body Simulations

    CERN Document Server

    Garrison, Lehman H; Ferrer, Douglas; Metchnik, Marc V; Pinto, Philip A


    In cosmological $N$-body simulations, the representation of dark matter as discrete "macroparticles" suppresses the growth of structure. This effect occurs even on scales many times larger than the particle spacing; for example, modes above $k_{\\rm Nyquist}/4$ inherit a 1 to 3% error in the matter power spectrum at $z=1$. Particle linear theory (PLT) (Marcos et al. 2006) analytically describes this effect for particle lattices and reveals that the continuum growing modes are not the proper lattice growing modes, which excites transient power. We develop initial conditions with the correct growing modes and additionally rescale these modes to account for growth suppression. We also introduce a scheme for computing second-order Lagrangian perturbation theory (2LPT) from direct force calculations without using Fourier transforms. We test rescaling and our 2LPT by comparing the $z=1$ haloes and power spectra with those of an oversampled reference simulation. The combination of rescaling and 2LPT achieves 1% accur...

  12. [Telecommunication--a medium for improving prenatal diagnosis and gynecologic ultrasound diagnosis? Initial experiences]. (United States)

    Sohn, C; Beldermann, F; Wallwiener, D; Lepold, H; Bastert, G


    To establish the requirements for real-time transfer of an ultrasound examination via telecommunication network the following tests were performed: The ultrasound data were transferred from the video out of an ultrasound system to a basis terminal of the German Telekom. Simultaneously, an external video camera filmed the positioning and movements of the ultrasound transducer, and the verbal comments were recorded. These informations were transmitted to Karlsruhe and London, where they were rerouted to the examination room in Heidelberg. Here the informations were received on a Telecom reception unit/terminal and compared directly with the initial signal. The quality was sufficient if the moving ultrasound images and the camera image of the transducer as well as the oral comment were transmitted over 2 parallel ISDN lines. The delay to a real-time transmission of the examination process is only in the range of milliseconds. If only one ISDN line is used, the image quality is unsatisfactory, three parallel lines do not bring significant improvement of image quality. Telemedicine seems a new possibility to bring the knowledge of specialized centers to the practicing gynaecologists thus avoiding unnecessary referrals. Still unanswered, however, are the problem of liability, data protection and costs.

  13. An Initial Look at the Quality of Life of Malaysian Families That Include Children with Disabilities (United States)

    Clark, M.; Brown, R.; Karrapaya, R.


    Background: While there is a growing body of literature in the quality of life of families that include children with disabilities, the majority of research has been conducted in western countries. The present study provides an initial exploration of the quality of life of Malaysian families that include children with developmental/intellectual…

  14. Galantamine improves sleep quality in patients with dementia. (United States)

    Naharci, Mehmet Ilkin; Ozturk, Ahmet; Yasar, Halit; Cintosun, Umit; Kocak, Necmettin; Bozoglu, Ergun; Tasci, Ilker; Doruk, Huseyin


    The purpose of the study was to evaluate the influences of cholinesterase inhibitors on sleep pattern and sleep disturbance. A total of 87 mild to moderate stage dementia patients who were not on cholinesterase enzyme inhibitor and memantine treatment were included in the study. The dementia patients were treated with donepezil, galantamine or rivastigmine, depending on the preference of the clinician. Fifty-five dementia patients (63.2 %) completed the study. Twenty-three elderly subjects, who had normal cognitive functions, were included in the study as the control group. The Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index was used for evaluating the sleep quality at the beginning and at the final assessment. The improvement in sleep quality was better with regard to changes in Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index scores with galantamine treatment compared to the donepezil and the control groups. A significant decrease in Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index scores was detected in the galantamine group after treatment. Although statistically not significant, rivastigmine decreased and donepezil increased the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index scores after treatment. Dementia patients who had a poor sleep quality (n: 36), the rate of improvement in sleep disturbance was 81.8 % in the galantamine group, 75 % in the rivastigmine, and 50 % in the donepezil group. Galantamine may be the first choice of cholinesterase inhibitor in mild to moderate dementia patients in terms of improving sleep quality.

  15. Internal quality audit and quality standards as a method of quality improvement at the Department of Ophthalmology, University Hospital. (United States)

    Nasić, Mirjana; Pokupec, Rajko; Katusić, Damir; Miklić, Pavle; Suić, Ivan; Galić, Slobodan


    Quality assessment of clinical health care with the programme of quality standard is a method of health management, through which better efficiency and safety of health outcomes can be achieved. In the period from 2002 to 2004, a pilot program of quality has been carried out on the Department of Ophthalmology, University Hospital Center in Zagreb. Seven internal audit teams of hospital commission and teams of hospital departments were evaluating introducing practice for quality standards every three months. In the period of two years improvement in all standards of quality has been noticed (expressed in percent of progress towards the ideal result of 100%): personnel 20%, patient rights 15%, medical equipment 40%, quality of emergency service 60%, implementation of clinical guidelines and criteria for elective admission 55%, quality of risk prevention 70%, quality of medical records 60%. The two-years-improvement dynamics of about 46%, first year 24%.

  16. Quality assurance and performance improvement in intraoperative neurophysiologic monitoring programs. (United States)

    Tamkus, Arvydas A; Rice, Kent S; McCaffrey, Michael T


    Quality assurance (QA) as it relates to intraoperative neurophysiological monitoring (IONM) can be defined as the systematic monitoring, evaluation, and modification of the IONM service to insure that desired standards of quality are being met. In practice, that definition is usually extended to include the concept that the quality of the IONM service will be improved wherever possible and, although there are some differences in the two terms, in this article the term QA will be understood to include quality improvement (QI) processes as well. The measurement and documentation of quality is becoming increasingly important to healthcare providers. This trend is being driven by pressures from accrediting agencies, payers, and patients. The essential elements of a QA program are described. A real-life example of QA techniques and management relevant to IONM providers is presented and discussed.

  17. Improving SLCF Science in the Himalayan Region: ICIMOD's Atmosphere Initiative (United States)

    Panday, A. K.; Pradhan, B. B.; Surapipith, V.


    What fraction of the black carbon arriving on Yala Glacier in Langtang, Nepal, is from cooking fires in the houses in the valley below? What fraction is from elsewhere in rural Nepal? What fraction is from industrial and transport sources in Kathmandu? What fraction is from northern India and beyond? What fraction is from the high altitude forest fires that take place during March or April? Effectively mitigating the impacts of black carbon and other short-lived climate forcers requires detailed understanding not just of emissions and impacts, but also of the atmospheric transport pathways that connect the two. In mountainous areas of the Hindu-Kush Himalaya detailed quantitative knowledge about emissions, atmospheric processes, and impacts is still largely missing. The International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) is an intergovernmental organization covering Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Nepal, China, Bhutan, Bangladesh, and Myanmar. ICIMOD's recently established Atmosphere Initiative not only assesses mitigation options and contributes to policy and capacity building in the region, but also works actively to promote collaboration among researchers in the region, while building up an in-house team whose research will address key questions about SLCF. In Spring 2013 ICIMOD's Atmosphere Initiative, in collaboration with the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS) in Potsdam, Germany, carried out the largest field campaign to date in Nepal, hosting instruments belonging to dozens of institutions around the world, at nine field site within and upwind of the Kathmandu Valley, Nepal. The dataset that has been collected gives unprecedented insights into the emissions and atmospheric processes taking place downwind of and within the largest urban agglomeration in the Himalaya region. Meanwhile, in collaboration with national partner institutions, ICIMOD is in the process of setting up one atmospheric observatory each in Bhutan and in

  18. Improving Milk Quality for Dairy Goat Farm Development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Cyrilla


    Full Text Available The present study was designed to evaluate factors affecting goat’s milk quality, consumer’s satisfaction to goat’s milk, and technical responses associated with goat’s milk quality. Three farms having more than 100 dairy goats were purposively selected for the study. Thirty consumers were determined by using judgement sampling techniques to assess the satisfaction of consumer to goat’s milk quality. Data were analyzed by using fishbone diagram and House of Quality matrix. The study revealed that milk quality produced by dairy goat farms met the standard quality of milk composition namely; specific gravity, total solid, fat, protein, and total solid non-fat. The main factors affecting goat milk quantity and quality were the quality of does, pregnancy status, number of kids per birth, shape and size of the udder, lactation length, and the health status of the goat. The attributes of goat’s milk that were able to achieve customer’s satisfaction targets were nutritional content, packaging size, and goat milk color. Technical responses that were major concern in ensuring goat’s milk quality included goat breed quality and health conditions, skills and performances of farmers and employees, feed quality, farm equipment hygiene and completeness, cleanliness, and hygiene of livestock housing and environment. Technical response on livestock health condition was the first priority to be improved.

  19. Hospital value-based purchasing (VBP) program: measurement of quality and enforcement of quality improvement. (United States)

    Szablowski, Katarzyna M


    VBP program is a novel medicare payment estimatin tool used to encourage clinical care quality improvement as well as improvement of patient experience as a customer of a health care system. The program utilizes well established tools of measuring clinical care quality and patient satisfaction such as the hospital IQR program and HCAHPS survey to estimate Medicare payments and encourage hospitals to continuosly improve the level of care they provide.


    NARCIS (Netherlands)



    Adequate replacement therapy in haemophilia has been available for two decades. This has led to considerable improvements in the life expectancy and physical status of haemophilia patients. A study was conducted to investigate whether this has also led to improvements in quality of life. With this a

  1. Lean management systems: creating a culture of continuous quality improvement. (United States)

    Clark, David M; Silvester, Kate; Knowles, Simon


    This is the first in a series of articles describing the application of Lean management systems to Laboratory Medicine. Lean is the term used to describe a principle-based continuous quality improvement (CQI) management system based on the Toyota production system (TPS) that has been evolving for over 70 years. Its origins go back much further and are heavily influenced by the work of W Edwards Deming and the scientific method that forms the basis of most quality management systems. Lean has two fundamental elements--a systematic approach to process improvement by removing waste in order to maximise value for the end-user of the service and a commitment to respect, challenge and develop the people who work within the service to create a culture of continuous improvement. Lean principles have been applied to a growing number of Healthcare systems throughout the world to improve the quality and cost-effectiveness of services for patients and a number of laboratories from all the pathology disciplines have used Lean to shorten turnaround times, improve quality (reduce errors) and improve productivity. Increasingly, models used to plan and implement large scale change in healthcare systems, including the National Health Service (NHS) change model, have evidence-based improvement methodologies (such as Lean CQI) as a core component. Consequently, a working knowledge of improvement methodology will be a core skill for Pathologists involved in leadership and management.

  2. Applying GRA and QFD to Improve Library Service Quality (United States)

    Chen, Yen-Ting; Chou, Tsung-Yu


    This paper applied Grey Relational Analysis (GRA) to Quality Function Deployment (QFD) to identify service improvement techniques for an academic library. First, reader needs and their importance, and satisfaction degrees were examined via questionnaires. Second, the service improvement techniques for satisfying the reader needs were developed by…

  3. 40 CFR 63.176 - Quality improvement program for pumps. (United States)


    ... 40 Protection of Environment 9 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Quality improvement program for pumps... improvement program for pumps. (a) In Phase III, if, on a 6-month rolling average, the greater of either 10 percent of the pumps in a process unit (or plant site) or three pumps in a process unit (or plant...

  4. 40 CFR 63.1035 - Quality improvement program for pumps. (United States)


    ... 40 Protection of Environment 10 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Quality improvement program for pumps... improvement program for pumps. (a) Criteria. If, on a 6-month rolling average, at least the greater of either 10 percent of the pumps in a process unit or affected facility (or plant site) or three pumps in...

  5. Total Quality Management Continuous Improvement: Is the Philosophy a Reality? (United States)

    Walsh, Aidan; Hughes, Helen; Maddox, Daniel P.


    Responses from 72 Irish companies identified 51 using total quality management (TQM); second-survey responses from 28 of the latter showed that 57% of TQM initiatives were successful or very successful; most have a good understanding of comprehensive TQM and value long-term over short-term results. Benefits were experienced throughout…

  6. A leadership initiative to improve communication and enhance safety. (United States)

    Donahue, Moreen; Miller, Matthew; Smith, Lisa; Dykes, Patricia; Fitzpatrick, Joyce J


    The EMPOWER project was a collaborative effort to promote a culture of patient safety at Danbury Hospital through an interdisciplinary leadership-driven communication program. The "EMPOWER" component includes Educating and Mentoring Paraprofessionals On Ways to Enhance Reporting of changes in patient status. Specifically, the EMPOWER program was designed to prepare paraprofessional staff (PPS) to communicate changes in patient status using SBAR (situation, background, assessment, recommendations) structured communication. The specific project goals included (a) translation of SBAR structured communication methods for use with PPS, (b) reduction of cultural and educational barriers to interdisciplinary communication, and (c) examination of the effect of the EMPOWER intervention on the PPS communication practices and perceptions of the patient safety culture. Results of the project indicate a change in the use of SBAR throughout the institution, with particular improvement in communication from PPS to professional staff.

  7. On Improving Higher Vocational College Education Quality Assessment (United States)

    Wu, Xiang; Chen, Yan; Zhang, Jie; Wang, Yi

    Teaching quality assessment is a judgment process by using the theory and technology of education evaluation system to test whether the process and result of teaching have got to a certain quality level. Many vocational schools have established teaching quality assessment systems of their own characteristics as the basic means to do self-examination and teaching behavior adjustment. Combined with the characteristics and requirements of the vocational education and by analyzing the problems exist in contemporary vocational school, form the perspective of the content, assessment criteria and feedback system of the teaching quality assessment to optimize the system, to complete the teaching quality information net and offer suggestions for feedback channels, to make the institutionalization, standardization of the vocational schools and indeed to make contribution for the overall improvement of the quality of vocational schools.

  8. Quality improvement in clinical documentation: does clinical governance work?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dehghan M


    Full Text Available Mahlegha Dehghan,1 Dorsa Dehghan,2 Akbar Sheikhrabori,3 Masoume Sadeghi,4 Mehrdad Jalalian5 1Department of Medical Surgical Nursing, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman, 2Department of Pediatric Nursing, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Islamic Azad University Kerman Branch, Kerman, 3Department of Medical Surgical Nursing, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman, 4Research Center for Modeling in Health, Institute of Futures Studies in Health, Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman, 5Electronic Physician Journal, Mashhad, Iran Introduction: The quality of nursing documentation is still a challenge in the nursing profession and, thus, in the health care industry. One major quality improvement program is clinical governance, whose mission is to continuously improve the quality of patient care and overcome service quality problems. The aim of this study was to identify whether clinical governance improves the quality of nursing documentation. Methods: A quasi-experimental method was used to show nursing documentation quality improvement after a 2-year clinical governance implementation. Two hundred twenty random nursing documents were assessed structurally and by content using a valid and reliable researcher made checklist. Results: There were no differences between a nurse's demographic data before and after 2 years (P>0.05 and the nursing documentation score did not improve after a 2-year clinical governance program. Conclusion: Although some efforts were made to improve nursing documentation through clinical governance, these were not sufficient and more attempts are needed. Keywords: nursing documentation, clinical governance, quality improvement, nursing record

  9. Beyond clinical engagement: a pragmatic model for quality improvement interventions, aligning clinical and managerial priorities. (United States)

    Pannick, Samuel; Sevdalis, Nick; Athanasiou, Thanos


    Despite taking advantage of established learning from other industries, quality improvement initiatives in healthcare may struggle to outperform secular trends. The reasons for this are rarely explored in detail, and are often attributed merely to difficulties in engaging clinicians in quality improvement work. In a narrative review of the literature, we argue that this focus on clinicians, at the relative expense of managerial staff, has proven counterproductive. Clinical engagement is not a universal challenge; moreover, there is evidence that managers-particularly middle managers-also have a role to play in quality improvement. Yet managerial participation in quality improvement interventions is often assumed, rather than proven. We identify specific factors that influence the coordination of front-line staff and managers in quality improvement, and integrate these factors into a novel model: the model of alignment. We use this model to explore the implementation of an interdisciplinary intervention in a recent trial, describing different participation incentives and barriers for different staff groups. The extent to which clinical and managerial interests align may be an important determinant of the ultimate success of quality improvement interventions.

  10. Internal Resources to Improve the Quality of Higher Education

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tatyana V. Zak


    Full Text Available The article deals with the situation in the Russian higher education system. The factors affecting the improvement of the quality of higher education are analyzed. The emphasis is on mass universities. The main obstacles to improving the quality of education in these institutions are the Institute of collective reputation and the high costs of the struggle for improving the quality of education.The necessity of focusing on the actuation of the internal resources to improve the quality associated with the change in the educational process: giving students the right to choose the timing exams and training period at university. The implementation of the proposed measures will reduce the opportunity costs associated with quality improvement activities. The proposed change in the organization of the learning process opens the possibility to estimate the activity of universities in terms of medium-term implementation of educational programs. The use of this indicator will not only combine the two different targets of universities, but also to minimize the costs of opportunistic behavior of teachers and management.

  11. Interventions to improve water quality for preventing diarrhoea (United States)

    Clasen, Thomas F; Alexander, Kelly T; Sinclair, David; Boisson, Sophie; Peletz, Rachel; Chang, Howard H; Majorin, Fiona; Cairncross, Sandy


    Background Diarrhoea is a major cause of death and disease, especially among young children in low-income countries. In these settings, many infectious agents associated with diarrhoea are spread through water contaminated with faeces. In remote and low-income settings, source-based water quality improvement includes providing protected groundwater (springs, wells, and bore holes), or harvested rainwater as an alternative to surface sources (rivers and lakes). Point-of-use water quality improvement interventions include boiling, chlorination, flocculation, filtration, or solar disinfection, mainly conducted at home. Objectives To assess the effectiveness of interventions to improve water quality for preventing diarrhoea. Search methods We searched the Cochrane Infectious Diseases Group Specialized Register (11 November 2014), CENTRAL (the Cochrane Library, 7 November 2014), MEDLINE (1966 to 10 November 2014), EMBASE (1974 to 10 November 2014), and LILACS (1982 to 7 November 2014). We also handsearched relevant conference proceedings, contacted researchers and organizations working in the field, and checked references from identified studies through 11 November 2014. Selection criteria Randomized controlled trials (RCTs), quasi-RCTs, and controlled before-and-after studies (CBA) comparing interventions aimed at improving the microbiological quality of drinking water with no intervention in children and adults. Data collection and analysis Two review authors independently assessed trial quality and extracted data. We used meta-analyses to estimate pooled measures of effect, where appropriate, and investigated potential sources of heterogeneity using subgroup analyses. We assessed the quality of evidence using the GRADE approach. Main results Forty-five cluster-RCTs, two quasi-RCTs, and eight CBA studies, including over 84,000 participants, met the inclusion criteria. Most included studies were conducted in low- or middle-income countries (LMICs) (50 studies) with

  12. A quality improvement tool - driver diagram: a model of driver diagram to reduce primary caesarean section rates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Naima Fathima


    Results: Various quality improvement tools can be used in the clinical context. Among them, driver diagram is most widely used at the start of an improvement initiative. The driver diagram in this article shows its applicability in one of the clinical aspects of obstetrics, to reduce primary caesarean section rates. Conclusions: Driver diagram is an easy and a simple tool widely used in quality improvement activities. It is essential to use at the beginning of improvement initiatives. [Int J Res Med Sci 2016; 4(5.000: 1339-1342

  13. An integrated model for continuous quality improvement and productivity improvement in health services organizations. (United States)

    Rakich, J S; Darr, K; Longest, B B


    The health services paradigm with respect to quality has shifted to that of conformance to requirements (the absence of defects) and fitness for use (meeting customer expectations and needs). This article presents an integrated model of continuous quality improvement (CQI) (often referred to as total quality management) and productivity improvement for health services organizations. It incorporates input-output theory and focuses on the CQI challenge--"How can we be certain that we do the right things right the first time, every time?" The twin pillars of CQI are presented. Achievement of both will result in productivity improvement and enhancement of the health services organization's competitive position.

  14. [Quality assurance and quality improvement in medical practice. Part 1. Definition and importance of quality in medical practice]. (United States)

    Godény, Sándor


    In Hungary, financing of healthcare has decreased relative to the GDP, while the health status of the population is still ranks among the worst in the European Union. Since healthcare financing is not expected to increase, the number of practicing doctors per capita is continuously decreasing. In the coming years, it is an important question that in this situation what methods can be used to prevent further deterioration of the health status of the Hungarian population, and within this is the role of the quality approach, and different methods of quality management. In the present and the forthcoming two articles those standpoints will be summarized which support the need for the integration of quality assurance in the everyday medical practice. In the first part the importance of quality thinking, quality management, quality assurance, necessity of quality measurement and improvement, furthermore, advantages of the quality systems will be discussed.

  15. Rapid core measure improvement through a "business case for quality". (United States)

    Perlin, Jonathan B; Horner, Stephen J; Englebright, Jane D; Bracken, Richard M


    Incentives to improve performance are emerging as revenue or financial penalties are linked to the measured quality of service provided. The HCA "Getting to Green" program was designed to rapidly increase core measure performance scores. Program components included (1) the "business case for quality"-increased awareness of how quality drives financial performance; (2) continuous communication of clinical and financial performance data; and (3) evidence-based clinical protocols, incentives, and tools for process improvement. Improvement was measured by comparing systemwide rates of adherence to national quality measures for heart failure (HF), acute myocardial infarction (AMI), pneumonia (PN), and surgical care (SCIP) to rates from all facilities reporting to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). As of the second quarter of 2011, 70% of HCA total measure set composite scores were at or above the 90th percentile of CMS scores. A test of differences in regression coefficients between the CMS national average and the HCA average revealed significant differences for AMI (p = .001), HF (p = .012), PN (p < .001), and SCIP (p = .015). This program demonstrated that presentation of the financial implications of quality, transparency in performance data, and clearly defined goals could cultivate the desire to use improvement tools and resources to raise performance.

  16. Lower- Versus Higher-Income Populations In The Alternative Quality Contract: Improved Quality And Similar Spending. (United States)

    Song, Zirui; Rose, Sherri; Chernew, Michael E; Safran, Dana Gelb


    As population-based payment models become increasingly common, it is crucial to understand how such payment models affect health disparities. We evaluated health care quality and spending among enrollees in areas with lower versus higher socioeconomic status in Massachusetts before and after providers entered into the Alternative Quality Contract, a two-sided population-based payment model with substantial incentives tied to quality. We compared changes in process measures, outcome measures, and spending between enrollees in areas with lower and higher socioeconomic status from 2006 to 2012 (outcome measures were measured after the intervention only). Quality improved for all enrollees in the Alternative Quality Contract after their provider organizations entered the contract. Process measures improved 1.2 percentage points per year more among enrollees in areas with lower socioeconomic status than among those in areas with higher socioeconomic status. Outcome measure improvement was no different between the subgroups; neither were changes in spending. Larger or comparable improvements in quality among enrollees in areas with lower socioeconomic status suggest a potential narrowing of disparities. Strong pay-for-performance incentives within a population-based payment model could encourage providers to focus on improving quality for more disadvantaged populations.

  17. A Systems Thinking Approach To The Sustainability Of Quality Improvement Programmes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Van Dyk, Dirk Johannes


    Full Text Available The challenge for organisations to continually provide the best return on investment for their shareholders has become increasingly difficult through globalisation of the market place. There are many responses a company could make to these challenges for example, new product development, increased market capitalisation, cost reduction initiatives, and quality management. This last response focuses on, but is not restricted to, customer satisfaction, continuous improvement, and environmental impact. Continuous improvement addresses waste in the business design and manufacturing processes, which could lead to improved profit margins. The sustainability of quality improvement programmes remains a challenge. Causality can be studied, using Six Sigma tools, to relate cause and effect. But these tools do not always allow the user to study and understand feedback from other factors, such as soft human issues, in the improvement process system, typically referred to as feedback causality. System dynamics may improve this understanding. Quality improvement programmes in the heavy engineering manufacturing environment are not researched to the same degree as those in the automotive manufacturing environment. The purpose of this paper is to share results from research into the sustainability of quality improvement programmes, and the development of an appropriate system dynamics model, using qualitative case study data gathered and coded in a heavy engineering manufacturing environment.

  18. Improving quality on the pediatric surgery service: Missed opportunities and making it happen. (United States)

    Berman, Loren; Vinocur, Charles D


    In surgery, quality improvement efforts have evolved from the traditional case-by-case review typical for morbidity and mortality conferences to more accurate and comprehensive data collection accomplished through participation in national registries such as the National Surgical Quality Improvement Program. Gaining administrative support to participate in these kinds of initiatives and commitment of the faculty and staff to make change in a data-driven manner rather than as a reaction to individual events can be a challenge. This article guides the reader through the process of interacting with administrative leadership to gain support for evidence-based quality improvement endeavors. General principles that are discussed include stakeholder engagement, taking advantage of preexisting resources, and the sharing of data in order to shape QI efforts and demonstrate their effectiveness.

  19. Quality Improvement in Hospitals: Identifying and Understanding Behaviors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lukasz M. Mazur


    Full Text Available Improving operational performance in hospitals is complicated, particularly if process improvement requires complex behavioral changes. Using single-loop and double-loop learning theory as a foundation, the purpose of this research is to empirically uncover key improvement behaviors and the factors that may be associated with such behaviors in hospitals. A two-phased approach was taken to collect data regarding improvement behaviors and associated factors, and data analysis was conducted using methods proposed by grounded theorists. The contributions of this research are twofold. First, five key behaviors related to process improvement are identified, namely Quick Fixing, Initiating, Conforming, Expediting, and Enhancing. Second, based on these observed behaviors, a set of force field diagrams is developed to structure and organize possible factors that are important to consider when attempting to change improvement behaviors. This begins to fill the gap in the knowledge about what factors drive effective improvement efforts in hospital settings.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Josimar de Aparecido Vieira


    Full Text Available This work is discussed, in general, the state of knowledge on research dealing with the quality of the initial training of teachers. Presents an analytical and critical reading of the situation of the quality of the initial training of teachers from the analysis of the theoretical bases produced in the last decade. For this, initially, are presented some considerations on the development of this process, followed by an analysis on the issue of training. Following are considered some of the dilemmas or problems that have been addressed in the study area, suggesting mechanisms or alternative solutions. The main source of data used is the Bank of the CAPES Theses which is available on the home page, for the period from 2004 until 2006. Was used to search by typing the words "initial teacher training" in the "subject", which in 2004 were examined 33 abstracts were selected and these 15, in 2005 were examined 42 abstracts, of which 07 were deployed in 2006 and were seen 44 abstracts of which 21 have been considered because they relate to the quality of initial teacher education. Involved in this analysis, this study points out some principles and data that can help with the process of initial teacher training, pointing to possible review some indicators of pedagogical projects of degree courses. Emphasizes that the specificity and multidimensionality of the performance of the teacher raises the formulation of a set of information relevant to the qualification of objectives and practices of the initial key step in the process of learning to teach. Key words: Quality of education, initial training, university education, state of knowledge; indicators.

  1. Using mobile technology to improve healthcare service quality. (United States)

    Chao, Chia Chen; Jen, Wen Yuan; Li, Yu-Chuan; Chi, Y P; Chen, Chang-I; Feng, Chen Chjeh


    Improving healthcare service quality for illness of treatment, illness prevention and patient service is difficult for most hospitals because the hospitals are lack adequate resources and labor. In order to provide better healthcare service quality for patients, mobile technology can be used to manage healthcare in a way that provides the optimal healthcare service for patients. Pursuing utilization of mobile technology for better patient service, Taipei Medical University Municipal W. F. Teaching Hospital has implemented a mobile healthcare service (m-HS) system to increase healthcare service quality. The m-HS system improves the quality of medical care as well as healthcare service. The m-HS is a multi-functional healthcare management agent, meets the mobile tendency of the present society. This study seeks to discuss the m-HS architecture and workflow processes. We believe the m-HS does have the potential to improve healthcare service quality. Finally, the conclusions and suggestions for the m-HS are given.

  2. Faculty development on item writing substantially improves item quality. (United States)

    Naeem, Naghma; van der Vleuten, Cees; Alfaris, Eiad Abdelmohsen


    The quality of items written for in-house examinations in medical schools remains a cause of concern. Several faculty development programs are aimed at improving faculty's item writing skills. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of a faculty development program in item development. An objective method was developed and used to assess improvement in faculty's competence to develop high quality test items. This was a quasi experimental study with a pretest-midtest-posttest design. A convenience sample of 51 faculty members participated. Structured checklists were used to assess the quality of test items at each phase of the study. Group scores were analyzed using repeated measures analysis of variance. The results showed a significant increase in participants' mean scores on Multiple Choice Questions, Short Answer Questions and Objective Structured Clinical Examination checklists from pretest to posttest (p development are generally lacking in quality. It also provides evidence of the value of faculty development in improving the quality of items generated by faculty.

  3. Stimulating a Culture of Improvement: Introducing 
an Integrated Quality Tool for Organizational Self-Assessment. (United States)

    Coleman, Cathy


    As leaders and systems-level agents of change, oncology nurses are challenged by opportunities to guide organizational transformation from the front line to the board room. Across all care settings, reform and change initiatives are constants in the quest to optimize quality and healthcare outcomes for individuals, teams, populations, and organizations. This article describes a practical, evidence-based, integrated quality tool for initiating organizational self-assessment to prioritize issues and stimulate a culture of continuous improvement.

  4. Improvement in quality of hospital care during accreditation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bie Bogh, Søren; Falstie-Jensen, Anne Mette; Hollnagel, Erik;


    OBJECTIVE: To assess changes over time in quality of hospital care in relation to the first accreditation cycle in Denmark. DESIGN, SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: We performed a multi-level, longitudinal, stepped-wedge, nationwide study of process performance measures to evaluate the impact of a manda......OBJECTIVE: To assess changes over time in quality of hospital care in relation to the first accreditation cycle in Denmark. DESIGN, SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: We performed a multi-level, longitudinal, stepped-wedge, nationwide study of process performance measures to evaluate the impact...... of a mandatory accreditation programme in all Danish public hospitals. Patient-level data (n = 1 624 518 processes of care) on stroke, heart failure, ulcer, diabetes, breast cancer and lung cancer care were obtained from national clinical quality registries. INTERVENTION: The Danish Healthcare Quality Programme...... was introduced in 2009, aiming to create a framework for continuous quality improvement. MAIN OUTCOME: Changes in week-by-week trends of hospital care during the study period of 269 weeks prior to, during and post-accreditation. RESULTS: The quality of hospital care improved over time throughout the study period...

  5. Quality management science in clinical chemistry: a dynamic framework for continuous improvement of quality. (United States)

    Westgard, J O; Burnett, R W; Bowers, G N


    Current quality assurance approaches will not be adequate to satisfy the needs for quality in the next decade. Quality management science (QMS), as evolving in industry today, provides the dynamic framework necessary to provide continuous improvement of quality. QMS emphasizes the importance of defining quality goals based on the needs and expectations (implied needs) of customers. The laboratory can develop customer-friendly goals and measures of quality by recognizing that customers' experiences are represented by a totality of results. Quality goals and measures are best communicated as "total performance" by specifying a limit and percentile of the distribution, rather than a mean and standard deviation. Application of quality goals within the laboratory will usually require partitioning the total performance goal into components and translating those components into specifications to guide the operation and management of production processes. QMS also extends beyond technical processes to people processes and provides guidance for improving the quality of worklife and caring for the laboratory's most essential resource--our people.

  6. Software quality and process improvement in scientific simulation codes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ambrosiano, J.; Webster, R. [Los Alamos National Lab., NM (United States)


    This report contains viewgraphs on the quest to develope better simulation code quality through process modeling and improvement. This study is based on the experience of the authors and interviews with ten subjects chosen from simulation code development teams at LANL. This study is descriptive rather than scientific.

  7. Training in data definitions improves quality of intensive care data

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Arts, DGT; Bosman, RJ; de Jonge, E; Joore, JCA; de Keizer, NF


    Background Our aim was to assess the contribution of training in data definitions and data extraction guidelines to improving quality of data for use in intensive care scoring systems such as the Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Evaluation (APACHE) II and Simplified Acute Physiology Score (SAPS)

  8. Identifying targets for quality improvement in hospital antibiotic prescribing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Spreuwel, P.C. van; Blok, H.; Langelaar, M.F.; Kullberg, B.J.; Mouton, J.W.; Natsch, S.S.


    OBJECTIVES: To audit antibiotic use in a university hospital and to identify targets for quality improvement in a setting with low antibiotic use and resistance rates. METHODOLOGY: A point-prevalence survey (PPS), using a patient-based audit tool for antibiotic use, was executed in the Radboud Unive

  9. Fonio (Digitaria exilis) in West Africa: towards improving nutrient quality

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Koreissi, Y.


    Fonio (Digitaria exilis) in West Africa: Towards improving nutrient quality Abstract Hidden hunger affects a far greater percentage of the world’s population with iron and zinc deficiencies being the most common, particularly affecting women of reproductive ag

  10. Use of different additives to improve low quality surimi gelation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Deysi Cando


    In conclusion, in general, the physicochemical and viscoelastic properties of gels were improved by the addition of both ingredients, giving stronger gels even at very low level of salt. These results indicate that both ingredients, which do not add calories to the final gels, can be used as a good alternative for the better gelation of the low quality surimis.

  11. Student Evaluations of Teaching: Improving Teaching Quality in Higher Education (United States)

    Hammonds, Frank; Mariano, Gina J.; Ammons, Gracie; Chambers, Sheridan


    Student evaluations of teaching (SET) are widely used in both North America and the UK as a means of documenting and improving teaching quality. This article discusses current research on SET administration and interpretation in both regions. Sections of the article are dedicated to various problems associated with SETs and how these may be…

  12. Guiding and Modelling Quality Improvement in Higher Education Institutions (United States)

    Little, Daniel


    The article considers the process of creating quality improvement in higher education institutions from the point of view of current organisational theory and social-science modelling techniques. The author considers the higher education institution as a functioning complex of rules, norms and other organisational features and reviews the social…

  13. Diffusion of a quality improvement programme among allied health professionals.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sluijs, E.M.; Dekker, J.


    Objective: To assess the diffusion of a quality improvement (QI) programme among allied health professions in The Netherlands. Design: Descriptive study, based on a questionnaire distributed to allied health professionals; response rate, 63%. Settings and participants: All subsectors in health care

  14. Image quality improvement for underground radar by block migration method (United States)

    Ho, Gwangsu; Kawanaka, Akira; Takagi, Mikio


    Techniques have been developed which have been imaging optically opaque regions using an electromagnetic wave radar in order to estimate the location of the objects in those regions. One important application of these techniques is the detection of buried pipes and cables. In the case of underground radar, its image quality often becomes low because the nature of the soil is not uniform and an electromagnetic wave is attenuated in soil. Hence, the method which improves the quality of the radar images is required. In this paper, we point out that the quality of underground images can be improved significantly by means of the block migration method. In this method LOT (Lapped Orthogonal Transform) was applied. LOT is a new block transform method in which basis functions overlap in adjacent blocks, and it has a fast computation algorithm. In addition to above, we propose a method of estimating dielectric constant in soil using the processed images. The result of applying the block migration method to the underground radar images are presented. It points out the good capability for the image quality improvement and the application of LOT can improve the influence by blocking and the processing time. Also the dielectric constant in each block can be estimated accurately.

  15. The Application of Fishbone Diagram Analisis to Improve School Quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Slameto Slameto


    Full Text Available The research problems are: 1 What steps are to take in a program development aimed at improving the quality of school using a fishbone analysis? 2 Is the program model using fishbone analysis  effective and efficient in meeting the school’s needs to improve its quality? This is research and developmental which comprises 3 phases, namely Preliminary Study, Model Development, and Evaluation/Model Testing. The qualitative data come from the input of management experts and the result of interviews/FGD with stakeholders. The quantitative data are obtained from the assessment of management experts on the product draft, the observation sheets for the field study on the standards of education, and the try out. Data analisis on the validation result uses a descriptive analysis technique. Data from the questionnaire are analyzed by descriptive statistical technique. The results are: 1 the developmental steps in the school quality improvement program by way of fish bone analysis have gone through 6 phases, 2 the research product using fish bone diagram has proved to be simple, applicable, important, controllable, as well as adaptable. Furthermore, it is communicable, so that it has been effective and efficient in meeting the school’s needs for making its educational quality improved.

  16. 40 CFR 65.116 - Quality improvement program for pumps. (United States)


    ... 40 Protection of Environment 15 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Quality improvement program for pumps... pumps. (a) Criteria. If, on a 6-month rolling average, at least the greater of either 10 percent of the pumps in a process unit (or plant site) or three pumps in a process unit (or plant site) leak, the...

  17. Improving NAVFAC's total quality management of construction drawings with CLIPS (United States)

    Antelman, Albert


    A diagnostic expert system to improve the quality of Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) construction drawings and specification is described. C Language Integrated Production System (CLIPS) and computer aided design layering standards are used in an expert system to check and coordinate construction drawings and specifications to eliminate errors and omissions.

  18. Faculty development on item writing substantially improves item quality.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Naeem, N.; Vleuten, C.P.M. van der; Alfaris, E.A.


    The quality of items written for in-house examinations in medical schools remains a cause of concern. Several faculty development programs are aimed at improving faculty's item writing skills. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of a faculty development program in item develo

  19. Improving Lecture Quality through Training in Public Speaking (United States)

    Mowbray, Robert; Perry, Laura B.


    Lecturing is a common instructional format but poor lecturing skills can detract from students' learning experiences and outcomes. As lecturing is essentially a form of public communication, training in public speaking may improve lecture quality. Twelve university lecturers in Malaysia participated in a six-week public speaking skills training…

  20. Improving quality at many levels. Profamilia's experience in Colombia. (United States)

    Trias, M; Plata, M I


    Profamilia, the Colombian family planning association and the country's largest family planning provider, began diversifying its services in 1982 to offer prenatal care services as well as general medical consultations. The organization has since attempted to integrate quality assurance at all levels of operation. Specifically, Profamilia is aiming to provide care which is of sustainably high quality to satisfy present clients and attract new ones without overtaxing available organization resources, thereby prompting the eventual financial collapse of the programs and the failure to increase coverage especially among the middle and lower classes of the country. Drawing from the credo of modern corporate enterprise, "the client is always right," Profamilia listens and responds to clients' needs with the goal of making their satisfaction the ultimate objective. Moreover, organization staff receive regular training to motivate their receptiveness to client needs, while the pursuit of quality exists as a major goal at the managerial level. Profamilia regards quality maintenance and improvement as indispensable in program sustainability.

  1. Continuous Improvement in Nursing Education through Total Quality Management (TQM

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tang Wai Mun


    Full Text Available Total Quality Management (TQM has generally been validated as a crucial revolution in the management field. Many academicians believe that the concept of TQM is applicable to academics and provides guiding principles towards improving education. Therefore, an increasing number of educational institutions such as schools, colleges and universities have started to embrace TQM philosophies to their curricula.Within the context of TQM, this paper would explore the concept of continuous improvement by using the Deming philosophy. Subsequently, this paper would elaborate on the application of TQM to bring about continuous improvement in the current education system.

  2. Increased office productivity through improved indoor air quality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fanger, Povl Ole


    Building Syndrome (SBS) symptoms and improve the productivity of office workers. In these experiments, the performance of simulated office work (text typing, addition and proof-reading, all typical office tasks requiring concentration) improved monotonically as the proportion of persons dissatisfied......, future developments in HVCAC technology may include "personalized air ", new ways of improving the quality of supply air (e.g., by filtration), more extensive use of heat recovery from exhaust air and systematic selection of low-polluting building and furnishing materials....

  3. An Improved Sequential Initiation Method for Multitarget Track in Clutter with Large Noise Measurement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daxiong Ji


    Full Text Available This paper proposes an improved sequential method for underwater multiple objects tracks initiation in clutter, estimating the initial position for the trajectory. The underwater environment is complex and changeable, and the sonar data are not very ideal. When the detection distance is far, the error of measured data is also great. Besides that, the clutter has a grave effect on the tracks initiation. So it is hard to initialize a track and estimate the initial position. The new tracks initiation is that when at least six of ten points meet the requirements, then we determine that there is a new track and the initial states of the parameters are estimated by the linear least square method. Compared to the conventional tracks initiation methods, our method not only considers the kinematics information of targets, but also regards the error of the sonar sensors as an important element. Computer simulations confirm that the performance of our method is very nice.

  4. A roadmap to improve the quality of atrial fibrillation management

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kirchhof, Paulus; Breithardt, Günter; Bax, Jeroen


    . Hence, there are important unmet clinical and research needs in the evaluation and management of AF patients. The ensuing needs and opportunities for improving the quality of AF care were discussed during the fifth Atrial Fibrillation Network/European Heart Rhythm Association consensus conference...... in Nice, France, on 22 and 23 January 2015. Here, we report the outcome of this conference, with a focus on (i) learning from our 'neighbours' to improve AF care, (ii) patient-centred approaches to AF management, (iii) structured care of AF patients, (iv) improving the quality of AF treatment, and (v......) personalization of AF management. This report ends with a list of priorities for research in AF patients....

  5. Research on Improving Manufacturing Practice Quality in Mechanical Industrial Design

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaowei Jiang


    Full Text Available In order to solve the problems existing in the manufacturing practice of mechanical industrial design, a series of methods and concrete measures are proposed, so as to improve the quality of manufacturing practice of mechanical industrial design. In this study, the problems existing in the manufacturing practice of mechanical industrial design are analyzed detailedly. And the methods and concrete measures including establishing the new mode of manufacturing practice of mechanical industrial design, improving the understanding to manufacturing practice and knowing the major role, establishing a professional characteristic base of manufacturing practice and strengthening the construction of instructor troops of manufacturing practice are proposed, which will certainly have a profound theoretical and practical guiding significance. On this foundation, the research conclusion on improving manufacturing practice quality in mechanical industrial design is done.

  6. Quality improvement in basic histotechnology: the lean approach. (United States)

    Clark, David


    Lean is a comprehensive system of management based on the Toyota production system (TPS), encompassing all the activities of an organization. It focuses management activity on creating value for the end-user by continuously improving operational effectiveness and removing waste. Lean management creates a culture of continuous quality improvement with a strong emphasis on developing the problem-solving capability of staff using the scientific method (Deming's Plan, Do, Check, Act cycle). Lean management systems have been adopted by a number of histopathology departments throughout the world to simultaneously improve quality (reducing errors and shortening turnround times) and lower costs (by increasing efficiency). This article describes the key concepts that make up a lean management system, and how these concepts have been adapted from manufacturing industry and applied to histopathology using a case study of lean implementation and evidence from the literature. It discusses the benefits, limitations, and pitfalls encountered when implementing lean management systems.

  7. Defect Investigation as a Tool for Quality Improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. Gurumurthy


    Full Text Available Defect investigation is an important tool for quality improvement as it identifies the root cause of errors and steps to be taken to eliminate these. In this paper, four cases of defect investigation are presented. The case studies cover link elevator, wing-fuselage attachment bolt, and stiff nut for Lakshya unmanned aerial vehicle. It was observed that the link elevator was discolourised even though the material used was the stainless steel. Investigations revealed that the stainless steel was heat-treated. In the case of leading edge, it was found that there was no provision for the location of a component in the tool, resulting in mismatch. Thread damage was noticed in wing-fuselage attachment bolts because of over tightening. All these studies resulted in improvement in the raw material bonding, inspection procedures, and fabrication methods, thus resulting in quality improvement.

  8. Cardio-renal syndromes : report from the consensus conference of the Acute Dialysis Quality Initiative

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ronco, Claudio; McCullough, Peter; Anker, Stefan D.; Anand, Inder; Aspromonte, Nadia; Bagshaw, Sean M.; Bellomo, Rinaldo; Berl, Tomas; Bobek, Ilona; Cruz, Dinna N.; Daliento, Luciano; Davenport, Andrew; Haapio, Mikko; Hillege, Hans; House, Andrew A.; Katz, Nevin; Maisel, Alan; Mankad, Sunil; Zanco, Pierluigi; Mebazaa, Alexandre; Palazzuoli, Alberto; Ronco, Federico; Shaw, Andrew; Sheinfeld, Geoff; Soni, Sachin; Vescovo, Giorgio; Zamperetti, Nereo; Ponikowski, Piotr


    A consensus conference on cardio-renal syndromes (CRS) was held in Venice Italy, in September 2008 under the auspices of the Acute Dialysis Quality Initiative (ADQI). The following topics were matter of discussion after a systematic literature review and the appraisal of the best available evidence:

  9. [Improvement of medical processes with Six Sigma - practicable zero-defect quality in preparation for surgery]. (United States)

    Sobottka, Stephan B; Töpfer, Armin; Eberlein-Gonska, Maria; Schackert, Gabriele; Albrecht, D Michael


    Six Sigma is an innovative management- approach to reach practicable zero- defect quality in medical service processes. The Six Sigma principle utilizes strategies, which are based on quantitative measurements and which seek to optimize processes, limit deviations or dispersion from the target process. Hence, Six Sigma aims to eliminate errors or quality problems of all kinds. A pilot project to optimize the preparation for neurosurgery could now show that the Six Sigma method enhanced patient safety in medical care, while at the same time disturbances in the hospital processes and failure costs could be avoided. All six defined safety relevant quality indicators were significantly improved by changes in the workflow by using a standardized process- and patient- oriented approach. Certain defined quality standards such as a 100% complete surgical preparation at start of surgery and the required initial contact of the surgeon with the patient/ surgical record on the eve of surgery could be fulfilled within the range of practical zero- defect quality. Likewise, the degree of completion of the surgical record by 4 p.m. on the eve of surgery and their quality could be improved by a factor of 170 and 16, respectively, at sigma values of 4.43 and 4.38. The other two safety quality indicators "non-communicated changes in the OR- schedule" and the "completeness of the OR- schedule by 12:30 a.m. on the day before surgery" also show an impressive improvement by a factor of 2.8 and 7.7, respectively, corresponding with sigma values of 3.34 and 3.51. The results of this pilot project demonstrate that the Six Sigma method is eminently suitable for improving quality of medical processes. In our experience this methodology is suitable, even for complex clinical processes with a variety of stakeholders. In particular, in processes in which patient safety plays a key role, the objective of achieving a zero- defect quality is reasonable and should definitely be aspirated.

  10. Using quality measures for quality improvement: the perspective of hospital staff.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Asgar Aghaei Hashjin

    Full Text Available RESEARCH OBJECTIVE: This study examines the perspectives of a range of key hospital staff on the use, importance, scientific background, availability of data, feasibility of data collection, cost benefit aspects and availability of professional personnel for measurement of quality indicators among Iranian hospitals. The study aims to facilitate the use of quality indicators to improve quality of care in hospitals. STUDY DESIGN: A cross-sectional study was conducted over the period 2009 to 2010. Staff at Iranian hospitals completed a self-administered questionnaire eliciting their views on organizational, clinical process, and outcome (clinical effectiveness, patient safety and patient centeredness indicators. POPULATION STUDIED: 93 hospital frontline staff including hospital/nursing managers, medical doctors, nurses, and quality improvement/medical records officers in 48 general and specialized hospitals in Iran. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: On average, only 69% of respondents reported using quality indicators in practice at their affiliated hospitals. Respondents varied significantly in their reported use of organizational, clinical process and outcome quality indicators. Overall, clinical process and effectiveness indicators were reported to be least used. The reported use of indicators corresponded with their perceived level of importance. Quality indicators were reported to be used among clinical staff significantly more than among managerial staff. In total, 74% of the respondents reported to use obligatory indicators, while this was 68% for voluntary indicators (p<0.05. CONCLUSIONS: There is a general awareness of the importance and usability of quality indicators among hospital staff in Iran, but their use is currently mostly directed towards external accountability purposes. To increase the formative use of quality indicators, creation of a common culture and feeling of shared ownership, alongside an increased uptake of clinical process and


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zora Arsovski


    Full Text Available In essence, process of maintaining equipment is a support process, because it indirectly contributes to operational ability of the production process necessary for the supply chain of the new value. Taking into account increased levels of automatization and quality, this proces s becomes more and more significant and for some branches of industry, even crucial. Due to the fact that the quality of the entire process is more and more dependent on the maintenance process, these processes must be carefully designed and effectively im plemented. There are various techniques and approaches at our disposal, such as technical, logistical and intensive application of the information - communication technologies. This last approach is presented in this work. It begins with organizational goa ls, especially quality objectives. Then, maintenance processes and integrated information system structures are defined. Maintenance process quality and improvement processes are defined using a set of performances, with a special emphasis placed on effectiveness and quality economics. At the end of the work, information system for improving maintenance economics is structured. Besides theoretical analysis, work also presents results authors obtained analyzing food industry, metal processing industry an d building materials industry.

  12. Conducting a Successful Practice Quality Improvement Project for American Board of Radiology Certification. (United States)

    Lee, Cindy S; Wadhwa, Vibhor; Kruskal, Jonathan B; Larson, David B


    Practice quality improvement (PQI) is a required component of the American Board of Radiology (ABR) Maintenance of Certification (MOC) cycle, with the goal to "improve the quality of health care through diplomate-initiated learning and quality improvement." The essential requirements of PQI projects include relevance to one's practice, achievability in one's clinical setting, results suited for repeat measurements during an ABR MOC cycle, and reasonable expectation to result in quality improvement (QI). PQI projects can be performed by a group or an individual or as part of a participating institution. Given the interdisciplinary nature of radiology, teamwork is critical to ensure patient safety and the success of PQI projects. Additionally, successful QI requires considerable investment of time and resources, coordination, organizational support, and individual engagement. Group PQI projects offer many advantages, especially in larger practices and for processes that cross organizational boundaries, whereas individual projects may be preferred in small practices or for focused projects. In addition to the three-phase "plan, do, study, act" model advocated by the ABR, there are several other improvement models, which are based on continuous data collection and rapid simultaneous testing of multiple interventions. When properly planned, supported, and executed, group PQI projects can improve the value and viability of a radiology practice.

  13. Bee pollination improves crop quality, shelf life and commercial value. (United States)

    Klatt, Björn K; Holzschuh, Andrea; Westphal, Catrin; Clough, Yann; Smit, Inga; Pawelzik, Elke; Tscharntke, Teja


    Pollination improves the yield of most crop species and contributes to one-third of global crop production, but comprehensive benefits including crop quality are still unknown. Hence, pollination is underestimated by international policies, which is particularly alarming in times of agricultural intensification and diminishing pollination services. In this study, exclusion experiments with strawberries showed bee pollination to improve fruit quality, quantity and market value compared with wind and self-pollination. Bee-pollinated fruits were heavier, had less malformations and reached higher commercial grades. They had increased redness and reduced sugar-acid-ratios and were firmer, thus improving the commercially important shelf life. Longer shelf life reduced fruit loss by at least 11%. This is accounting for 0.32 billion US$ of the 1.44 billion US$ provided by bee pollination to the total value of 2.90 billion US$ made with strawberry selling in the European Union 2009. The fruit quality and yield effects are driven by the pollination-mediated production of hormonal growth regulators, which occur in several pollination-dependent crops. Thus, our comprehensive findings should be transferable to a wide range of crops and demonstrate bee pollination to be a hitherto underestimated but vital and economically important determinant of fruit quality.

  14. Quality and productivity improvement program (PPKP) from alumni perspective (United States)

    Ruza, Nadiah; Mustafa, Zainol


    Defining the quality of the university education system is not easy. Institutions of higher education, through curriculum are hoped to provide the knowledge, wisdom and personality of students. It is questionable of how far Quality and Productivity Improvement Program (PPKP) are capable to ensure the courses offered relevant and effective in preparing the students for job market. The effectiveness of a university to undertake responsibilities and the impact given to students even after they graduate can be a measure of education quality at university. So, the quality of education can be enhanced and improved from time to time. In general, this study is aims to determine the effectiveness of PPKP's education system from the perspective of their alumni as well as their satisfaction and the importance level based on how PPKP be able to meet their needs. In overall, summary of open-ended questions from the questionnaire, Importance-Performance analysis and correlation analysis were conducted for this study. Based on result, it appears that there are still some deficiencies that can be improve, particularly in terms of teaching skills and PPKP's relationships with external organizations to enable knowledge be channel effectively. Importance-Performance analysis highlights some topics or courses that should be offered by PPKP based on their importance in industrial practice. Summary of the results of correlation analysis was found that women are more positive and not too demanding compared to men. In addition, it is found that the responsibilities and workload of the older generations, higher income and a high level of experience demands them to use and practice what they have learned during their studies at PPKP. Results of this study are hoped could be used to improve the quality of education system at PPKP.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. V. Kapsky


    Full Text Available Road traffic with its share from 2/3 to 3/4 of the total volume of transport service represents rather large and complicated social and production system with several subsystems that include roads, transport facilities, road traffic organization, law enforcement, personnel training, road traffic service and others. Road traffic quality can be quantitatively evaluated in accordance with values of losses pertaining to social and economic cost of discretionary (unenforced expenses for road traffic process. Road traffic contains accident, ecological, economic and social risks. Accidence is considered as the most important risk for participants involved in road traffic because it directly concerns their life, health and welfare. So accident response has rather high social significance and it is considered as a matter of national importance. In this connection role of road traffic organization has become very important and it is directed on improvement of its quality including security in the accident clusters.Methodological principles for improvement of road traffic quality have been developed in the paper. These principles presuppose the following: maximization of danger while selecting investigation object; minimization of total losses while evaluating quality and selecting solutions on improvement in road traffic safety; balanced accountability of accidental and ecological losses while selecting solutions on higher road traffic safety in ambiguous situations; minimization of total cost pertaining to object operation while selecting measures on improvement of road traffic safety; obligatory operative control evaluation of accidence on the basis of method for conflict situations while introducing measures of road traffic safety. Such approaches will contribute to higher quality of the decisions taken in the field of road traffic organization.

  16. Software Defect Prediction Models for Quality Improvement: A Literature Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mrinal Singh Rawat


    Full Text Available In spite of meticulous planning, well documentation and proper process control during software development, occurrences of certain defects are inevitable. These software defects may lead to degradation of the quality which might be the underlying cause of failure. In todays cutting edge competition its necessary to make conscious efforts to control and minimize defects in software engineering. However, these efforts cost money, time and resources. This paper identifies causative factors which in turn suggest the remedies to improve software quality and productivity. The paper also showcases on how the various defect prediction models are implemented resulting in reduced magnitude of defects.

  17. On the Role of Software Quality Management in Software Process Improvement

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wiedemann Jacobsen, Jan; Kuhrmann, Marco; Münch, Jürgen


    Software Process Improvement (SPI) programs have been implemented, inter alia, to improve quality and speed of software development. SPI addresses many aspects ranging from individual developer skills to entire organizations. It comprises, for instance, the optimization of specific activities...... in the software lifecycle as well as the creation of organizational awareness and project culture. In the course of conducting a systematic mapping study on the state-of-the-art in SPI from a general perspective, we observed Software Quality Management (SQM) being of certain relevance in SPI programs...... and to develop an initial picture of how these topics are addressed in SPI. Our findings show a fairly pragmatic contribution set in which different solutions are proposed, discussed, and evaluated. Among others, our findings indicate a certain reluctance towards standard quality or (test) maturity models...

  18. On the Role of Software Quality Management in Software Process Improvement

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wiedemann Jacobson, Jan; Kuhrmann, Marco; Münch, Jürgen

    Software Process Improvement (SPI) programs have been implemented, inter alia, to improve quality and speed of software development. SPI addresses many aspects ranging from individual developer skills to entire organizations. It comprises, for instance, the optimization of specific activities...... in the software lifecycle as well as the creation of organizational awareness and project culture. In the course of conducting a systematic mapping study on the state-of-the-art in SPI from a general perspective, we observed Software Quality Management (SQM) being of certain relevance in SPI programs...... and to develop an initial picture of how these topics are addressed in SPI. Our findings show a fairly pragmatic contribution set in which different solutions are proposed, discussed, and evaluated. Among others, our findings indicate a certain reluctance towards standard quality or (test) maturity models...

  19. Quality-based financial incentives in health care: can we improve quality by paying for it? (United States)

    Conrad, Douglas A; Perry, Lisa


    This article asks whether financial incentives can improve the quality of health care. A conceptual framework drawn from microeconomics, agency theory, behavioral economics, and cognitive psychology motivates a set of propositions about incentive effects on clinical quality. These propositions are evaluated through a synthesis of extant peer-reviewed empirical evidence. Comprehensive financial incentives--balancing rewards and penalties; blending structure, process, and outcome measures; emphasizing continuous, absolute performance standards; tailoring the size of incremental rewards to increasing marginal costs of quality improvement; and assuring certainty, frequency, and sustainability of incentive payoffs--offer the prospect of significantly enhancing quality beyond the modest impacts of prevailing pay-for-performance (P4P) programs. Such organizational innovations as the primary care medical home and accountable health care organizations are expected to catalyze more powerful quality incentive models: risk- and quality-adjusted capitation, episode of care payments, and enhanced fee-for-service payments for quality dimensions (e.g., prevention) most amenable to piece-rate delivery.

  20. Interdisciplinary teamwork and the power of a quality improvement collaborative in tertiary neonatal intensive care units. (United States)

    Grover, Theresa R; Pallotto, Eugenia K; Brozanski, Beverly; Piazza, Anthony J; Chuo, John; Moran, Susan; McClead, Richard; Mingrone, Teresa; Morelli, Lorna; Smith, Joan R


    Significant gaps in healthcare quality and outcomes can be reduced via quality improvement collaboratives (QICs), which improve care by leveraging data and experience from multiple organizations.The Children's Hospital Neonatal Consortium Collaborative Initiatives for Quality Improvement team developed an infrastructure for neonatal QICs. We describe the structure and components of an effective multi-institutional neonatal QIC that implemented the "SLUG Bug" project designed to reduce central line-associated bloodstream infections (CLABSIs).The operational infrastructure of SLUG Bug involved 17 tertiary care neonatal intensive care units with a goal to reduce CLABSI in high-risk neonates. Clinical Practice Recommendations were produced, and the Institute of Healthcare Improvement Breakthrough Series provided the framework for the collaborative. Process measures studied the effectiveness of the collaborative structure.CLABSI rates decreased by 20% during a 12-month study period. Compliance bundle reporting exceeded 80%. A QIC score of 2.5 or more ("improvement") was achieved by 94% of centers and a score 4 or more ("significant improvement") was achieved by 35%.Frequent interactive project meetings, well-defined project metrics, continual shared learning opportunities, and individual team coaching were key QIC success components. Through a coordinated approach and committed leadership, QICs can effectively implement change and improve the care of neonates with complex diagnoses and rare diseases.

  1. Quality, cost efficiency, the new quality-cost imperative: systemwide improvements can yield financial gains. (United States)

    Birk, Susan


    The need to focus internally on cost management has largely replaced the revenue growth model of the past two decades and the external pursuit of opportunities for market and service expansion, according to Stephen R Mayfield, DHA, senior vice president of quality and performance improvement for the American Hospital Association. Outside financial pressure from primarily uncontrollable forces--the potential bundling of Medicare reimbursements to hospitals and nonpayments for readmissions and adverse events, to name a few--have compelled healthcare organizations to spend more time looking inward to finetune existing capabilities. As a result, quality improvement is evolving into a strategy for fiscal stability as well as a critical priority in itself.

  2. Strength Assessment of Broken Rock Postgrouting Reinforcement Based on Initial Broken Rock Quality and Grouting Quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hongfa Xu


    Full Text Available To estimate postgrouting rock mass strength growth is important for engineering design. In this paper, using self-developed indoor pressure-grouting devices, 19 groups of test cubic blocks were made of the different water cement ratio grouting into the broken rock of three kinds of particle sizes. The shear strength parameters of each group under different conditions were tested. Then this paper presents a quantitative calculation method for predicting the strength growth of grouted broken rock. Relational equations were developed to investigate the relationship between the growth rates of uniaxial compressive strength (UCS, absolute value of uniaxial tensile strength (AUTS, internal friction angle, and cohesion for post- to pregrouting broken rock based on Mohr-Coulomb strength criterion. From previous test data, the empirical equation between the growth rate of UCS and the ratio of the initial rock mass UCS to the grout concretion UCS has been determined. The equations of the growth rates of the internal friction coefficient and UCS for grouting broken rock with rock mass rating (RMR and its increment have been established. The calculated results are consistent with the experimental results. These observations are important for engineered design of grouting reinforcement for broken rock mass.

  3. Improving Weld Quality by Arc-Excited Ultrasonic Treatment

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    张春雷; 吴敏生; 杜敬磊


    Ultrasonic treatment of the solidifying metal is a promising method for improving the quality of fusion welding. A method to combine the ultrasonic waves to the welding process using arc-excited ultrasonic emission, called arc-ultrasonic, was high frequency modulation of the arc-plasma. The effects of arc-ultrasonic on the weld including the fusion zone, the partially melted zone and the heat-affected zone are described. The arc-ultrasonic energy changes the weld microstructure. In the fusion zone, the primary dendrite arm spacing decreases significantly and more acicular ferrite appears. In the partially melted zone, a large amount of fine grains appear. In the heat-affected zone, the width of the tempered zone increases with increasing modulation frequency and the microstructure is refined. The results show that arc-ultrasonic is a new and effective way for improving weld quality.

  4. The epistemology of quality improvement: it's all Greek. (United States)

    Perla, Rocco J; Parry, Gareth J


    In Plato's Theaetetus, knowledge is defined as the intersection of truth and belief, where knowledge cannot be claimed if something is true but not believed or believed but not true. Using an example from neonatal intensive care, this paper adapts Plato's definition of the concept 'knowledge' and applies it to the field of quality improvement in order to explore and understand where current tensions may lie for both practitioners and decision makers. To increase the uptake of effective interventions, not only does there need to be scientific evidence, there also needs to be an understanding of how people's beliefs are changed in order to increase adoption more rapidly. Understanding how best to maximise the overlap between actual and best practice is where quality improvement needs to employ educational and social sciences' methodologies and techniques.

  5. Crystal quality analysis and improvement using x-ray topography.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Maj, J.; Goetze, K.; Macrander, A.; Zhong, Y.; Huang, X.; Maj, L.; Univ. of Chicago


    The Topography X-ray Laboratory of the Advanced Photon Source (APS) at Argonne National Laboratory operates as a collaborative effort with APS users to produce high performance crystals for APS X-ray beamline experiments. For many years the topography laboratory has worked closely with an on-site optics shop to help ensure the production of crystals with the highest quality, most stress-free surface finish possible. It has been instrumental in evaluating and refining methods used to produce high quality crystals. Topographical analysis has shown to be an effective method to quantify and determine the distribution of stresses, to help identify methods that would mitigate the stresses and improve the Rocking curve, and to create CCD images of the crystal. This paper describes the topography process and offers methods for reducing crystal stresses in order to substantially improve the crystal optics.

  6. Skill Gap Analysis for Improved Skills and Quality Deliverables

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mallikarjun Koripadu


    Full Text Available With a growing pressure in identifying the skilled resources in Clinical Data Management (CDM world of clinical research organizations, to provide the quality deliverables most of the CDM organizations are planning to improve the skills within the organization. In changing CDM landscape the ability to build, manage and leverage the skills of clinical data managers is very critical and important. Within CDM to proactively identify, analyze and address skill gaps for all the roles involved. In addition to domain skills, the evolving role of a clinical data manager demands diverse skill sets such as project management, six sigma, analytical, decision making, communication etc. This article proposes a methodology of skill gap analysis (SGA management as one of the potential solutions to the big skill challenge that CDM is gearing up for bridging the gap of skills. This would in turn strength the CDM capability, scalability, consistency across geographies along with improved productivity and quality of deliverables

  7. Pleural mesothelioma: management updates and nursing initiatives to improve patient care

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lehto RH


    Full Text Available Rebecca H LehtoCollege of Nursing, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI, USAAbstract: Malignant pleural mesothelioma is a relatively rare but aggressive malignancy that is primarily associated with occupational asbestos exposure. While treatment options for mesothelioma have expanded, the disease carries a poor prognosis, with a median of 8 months to 1 year of survival postdiagnosis. This article synthesizes current disease-management practices, including the diagnostic workup, treatment modalities, emerging therapies, and symptom management, and identifies comprehensive nursing strategies that result in the best care based on updated evidence. Multidisciplinary coordination, palliative care initiation, survivorship, and end-of-life care are discussed. Findings may be applied in clinical environments as a resource to help nurses better understand treatment options and care for patients facing malignant pleural mesothelioma. Recommendations for future research are made to move nursing science forward and to improve patient well-being and health-related quality-of-life outcomes for patients and their family members.Keywords: pleural mesothelioma, cancer, symptom management, evidence-based care

  8. Power Quality Improvement of a Distributed Generation Power System

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Panga Harish


    Full Text Available The aim of this work is to improve the power quality for Distributed Generation (DG with power storage system. Power quality is the combination of voltage quality and current quality. Power quality is the set of limits of electrical properties that allows electrical systems to function in their intended manner without significant loss of performance or life. The electrical power quality is more concerned issue. The main problems are stationery and transient distortions in the line voltage such as harmonics, flicker, swells, sags and voltage asymmetries. Distributed Generation (DG also called as site generation, dispersed generation, embedded generation, decentralized generation, decentralized energy or distributed energy, generates electricity from the many small energy sources. In recent years, micro electric power systems such as photovoltaic generation systems, wind generators and micro gas turbines, etc., have increased with the deregulation and liberalization of the power market. Under such circumstances the environment surrounding the electric power industry has become ever more complicated and provides high-quality power in a stable manner which becomes an important topic. Here DG is assumed to include Wind power Generation (WG and Fuel Cells (FC, etc. Advantages of this system are constant power supply, constant voltage magnitude, absence of harmonics insupply voltage, un-interrupted power supply. In this project the electric power qualities in two cases will be compared. Case I: With the storage battery when it is introduced. Case II: Without the storage battery. The storage battery executes the control that maintains the voltage in the power system. It will be found that the Electric power quality will be improved, when storage battery is introduced. The model system used in this Project work is composed of a Wind Turbine, an Induction Generator, Fuel Cells, An Inverter and a Storage Battery. A miniature Wind Power Generator is


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katarzyna MIDOR


    Full Text Available Organisations constantly look for new, innovative solutions and methods which could be used to improve their efficiency and increase the quality of their products. Identifying the causes for returns is an important issue for modern compa-nies, as returns are the cause for the increase in production costs and, most importantly, the loss of credibility in the eyes of the client. Therefore, for the company to be able to sustain or strengthen its position on the market, it has to follow the rules of quality management. Especially important is the rule of constant improvement. This rule is primarily connected with preventing errors and defects from occurring at all the stages of the production process. To achieve that, one must, among other things, use quality management tools. The article presents an analysis of causes for returns of a vibrating screen produced by a company which manufactures machinery and equipment for the extractive industry, using quality management tools such as the Ishikawa diagram and Pareto analysis. The analysis allowed for the identifi-cation of the causes of client returns which could not be previously identified, and proposing solutions for them.

  10. Medical education and the quality improvement spiral: A case study from Mpumalanga, South Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Bac


    Full Text Available Background: The short timeframe of medical students’ rotations is not always conducive to successful, in-depth quality-improvement projects requiring a more longitudinal approach.Aim: To describe the process of inducting students into a longitudinal quality-improvement project,using the topic of the Mother- and Baby-Friendly Initiative as a case study; and to explore the possible contribution of a quality-improvement project to the development of student competencies.Setting: Mpumalanga clinical learning centres, where University of Pretoria medical students did their district health rotations.Method: Consecutive student groups had to engage with a hospital’s compliance with specific steps of the Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding that form the standards for the Mother- and Baby-Friendly Initiative. Primary data sources included an on-site PowerPoint group presentation (n = 42, a written group report (n = 42 and notes of individual interviews in an end-of-rotation objectively structured clinical examination station (n = 139.Results: Activities in each rotation varied according to the needs identified through the application of the quality-improvement cycle in consultation with the local health team. The development of student competencies is described according to the roles of a medical expert in the CanMEDS framework: collaborator, health advocate, scholar, communicator, manager and professional. The exposure to the real-life situation in South African public hospitals had a great influence on many students, who also acted as catalysts for transforming practice.Conclusion: Service learning and quality-improvement projects can be successfully integrated in one rotation and can contribute to the development of the different roles of a medical expert. More studies could provide insight into the potential of this approach in transforming institutions and student learning.

  11. Improving Quality of Seal Leak Test Product using Six Sigma (United States)

    Luthfi Malik, Abdullah; Akbar, Muhammad; Irianto, Dradjad


    Seal leak test part is a polyurethane material-based product. Based on past data, defect level of this product was 8%, higher than the target of 5%. Quality improvement effort was done using six sigma method that included phases of define, measure, analyse, improve, and control. In the design phase, a Delphi method was used to identify factors that were critical to quality. In the measure phase, stability and process capability was measured. Fault tree analysis (FTA) and failure mode and effect analysis (FMEA) were used in the next phase to analize the root cause and to determine the priority issues. Improve phase was done by compiling, selecting, and designing alternative repair. Some improvement efforts were identified, i.e. (i) making a checklist for maintenance schedules, (ii) making written reminder form, (iii) modifying the SOP more detail, and (iv) performing a major service to the vacuum machine. To ensure the continuity of improvement efforts, some control activities were executed, i.e. (i) controlling, monitoring, documenting, and setting target frequently, (ii) implementing reward and punishment system, (iii) adding cleaning tool, and (iv) building six sigma organizational structure.

  12. Studying and simulating transformer configuration to improve power quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oscar J. Peña Huaringa


    Full Text Available This paper presents a study and simulation of transformer configurations to improve power quality; it provides theoretical support based on the expansion of the Fourier series and analysis of symmetrical components. A test system was set up in the laboratory, taking measurements and checking configuration effectiveness in reducing the system’s harmonic content. The configurations were modelled with PSCAD / EMTDC software, using two 6 pulse rectifiers as test loads and two variable speed drives.

  13. [Financial incentives in improving healthcare quality. SESPAS Report 2012]. (United States)

    Eirea Eiras, Carlos; Ortún Rubio, Vicente


    We address the contribution of financial incentives linked to pay for performance (P4P) to improving the quality of care. The situation of P4P is analyzed internationally and in the distinct health services in Spain. The participation of P4P in wage compensation and the effects of the current economic crisis on these incentives is discussed. We review the results of recent studies to clarify the role of these incentive models and assess possible orientations and new proposals.


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    Arjan QEFALIA


    Full Text Available Education and higher education in particular is one of strategic priorities for development, which guarantees progress. Its role is related to all characteristics of a society, and it undoubtedly constitutes one of the most important areas of life of a nation. It has stable and long-term impact on all aspects of activities related to people and their welfare. The challenge to be faced in the transition period requires that higher education in Albania to be developed, consolidated and follow the trend of higher education in developed countries. Quality itself and by using the continuous quality improvement methods by universities, it constitutes the basis for ensuring the success of the Albanian higher education institutions in the future.In this paper, through the use of literature, the questionnaires and interviews directed mainly to the professors / pedagogues working in Albanian public higher education institutions, the focus is to show the continuous quality improvement methods used by universities / faculties / departments, and to test the hypothesis: The use or not of the continuous improvement methods is dependent on the studies type (those higher education institutions that offer first cycle studies, first and second cycle studies, or first, second and third cycle studies that the higher education institution offers.

  15. German Bowel Cancer Center: An Attempt to Improve Treatment Quality

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    Olof Jannasch


    Full Text Available Background. Colorectal cancer remains the second most common cause of death from malignancies, but treatment results show high diversity. Certified bowel cancer centres (BCC are the basis of a German project for improvement of treatment. The aim of this study was to analyze if certification would enhance short-term outcome in rectal cancer surgery. Material and Methods. This quality assurance study included 8197 patients with rectal cancer treated between 1 January 2008 and 31 December 2010. We compared cohorts treated in certified and noncertified hospitals regarding preoperative variables and perioperative outcomes. Outcomes were verified by matched-pair analysis. Results. Patients of noncertified hospitals had higher ASA-scores, higher prevalence of risk factors, more distant metastases, lower tumour localization, lower frequency of pelvic MRI, and higher frequencies of missing values and undetermined TNM classifications (significant differences only. Outcome analysis revealed more general complications in certified hospitals (20.3% versus 17.4%, p=0.03. Both cohorts did not differ significantly in percentage of R0-resections, intraoperative complications, anastomotic leakage, in-hospital death, and abdominal wall dehiscence. Conclusions. The concept of BCC is a step towards improving the structural and procedural quality. This is a good basis for improving outcome quality but cannot replace it. For a primary surgical disease like rectal cancer a specific, surgery-targeted program is still needed.

  16. Engaging primary care physicians in quality improvement: lessons from a payer-provider partnership. (United States)

    Lemak, Christy Harris; Cohen, Genna R; Erb, Natalie


    A health insurer in Michigan, through its Physician Group Incentive Program, engaged providers across the state in a collection of financially incentivized initiatives to transform primary care and improve quality. We investigated physicians' and other program stakeholders' perceptions of the program through semistructured interviews with more than 80 individuals. We found that activities across five areas contributed to successful provider engagement: (1) developing a vision of improving primary care, (2) deliberately fostering practice-practice partnerships, (3) using existing infrastructure, (4) leveraging resources and market share, and (5) managing program trade-offs. Our research highlights effective strategies for engaging primary care physicians in program design and implementation processes and creating learning communities to support quality improvement and practice change.

  17. Improving the Data Quality of Advanced LIGO Based on Early Engineering Run Results

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    Nuttall, L K; Areeda, J; Betzwieser, J; Dwyer, S; Effler, A; Fisher, R P; Fritschel, P; Kissel, J S; Lundgren, A P; Macleod, D M; Martynov, D; McIver, J; Mullavey, A; Sigg, D; Smith, J R; Vajente, G; Williamson, A R; Wipf, C C


    The Advanced Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory (LIGO) detectors have completed their initial upgrade phase and will enter the first observing run in late 2015, with detector sensitivity expected to improve in future runs. Through the combined efforts of on-site commissioners and the Detector Characterization group of the LIGO Scientific Collaboration, interferometer performance, in terms of data quality, at both LIGO observatories has vastly improved from the start of commissioning efforts to present. Advanced LIGO has already surpassed Enhanced LIGO in sensitivity, and the rate of noise transients, which would negatively impact astrophysical searches, has improved. Here we give details of some of the work which has taken place to better the quality of the LIGO data ahead of the first observing run.

  18. Lay health educators within primary care practices to improve cancer screening uptake for South Asian patients: challenges in quality improvement (United States)

    Lofters, AK; Vahabi, M; Prakash, V; Banerjee, L; Bansal, P; Goel, S; Dunn, S


    Background Cancer screening uptake is known to be low among South Asian residents of Ontario. The objective of this pilot study was to determine if lay health educators embedded within the practices of primary care providers could improve willingness to screen and cancer screening uptake for South Asian patients taking a quality improvement approach. Materials and methods Participating physicians selected quality improvement initiatives to use within their offices that they felt could increase willingness to screen and cancer screening uptake. They implemented initiatives, adapting as necessary, for six months. Results Four primary care physicians participated in the study. All approximated that at least 60% of their patients were of South Asian ethnicity. All physicians chose to work with a preexisting lay health educator program geared toward South Asians. Health ambassadors spoke to patients in the office and telephoned patients. For all physicians, ~60% of South Asian patients who were overdue for cancer screening and who spoke directly to health ambassadors stated they were willing to be screened. One physician was able to track actual screening among contacted patients and found that screening uptake was relatively high: from 29.2% (colorectal cancer) to 44.6% (breast cancer) of patients came in for screening within six months of the first phone calls. Although physicians viewed the health ambassadors positively, they found the study to be time intensive and resource intensive, especially as this work was additional to usual clinical duties. Discussion Using South Asian lay health educators embedded within primary care practices to telephone patients in their own languages showed promise in this study to increase awareness about willingness to screen and cancer screening uptake, but it was also time intensive and resource intensive with numerous challenges. Future quality improvement efforts should further develop the phone call invitation process, as well as

  19. Technology, managerial, and policy initiatives for improving environmental performance in small-scale gold mining industry. (United States)

    Hilson, Gavin; Van der Vorst, Rita


    This paper reviews a series of strategies for improving environmental performance in the small-scale gold mining industry. Although conditions vary regionally, few regulations and policies exist specifically for small-scale gold mining activity. Furthermore, because environmental awareness is low in most developing countries, sites typically feature rudimentary technologies and poor management practices. A combination of policy-, managerial- and technology-related initiatives is needed to facilitate environmental improvement in the industry. Following a broad overview of these initiatives, a recommended strategy is put forth for governments keen on improving the environmental conditions of resident small-scale gold mines.

  20. How to do better health reform: a snapshot of change and improvement initiatives in the health systems of 30 countries. (United States)

    Braithwaite, Jeffrey; Matsuyama, Yukihiro; Mannion, Russell; Johnson, Julie; Bates, David W; Hughes, Cliff


    Health systems are continually being reformed. Why, and how? To answer these questions, we draw on a book we recently contributed, Healthcare Reform, Quality and Safety: Perspectives, Participants, Partnerships and Prospects in 30 Countries We analyse the impact that these health-reform initiatives have had on the quality and safety of care in an international context-that is, in low-, middle- and high-income countries-Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Chile, China, Denmark, England, Ghana, Germany, the Gulf states, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Israel, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Myanmar, New Zealand, Norway, Oman, Papua New Guinea (PNG), South Africa, the USA, Scotland and Sweden. Popular reforms in less well-off countries include boosting equity, providing infrastructure, and reducing mortality and morbidity in maternal and child health. In countries with higher GDP per capita, the focus is on new IT systems or trialling innovative funding models. Wealthy or less wealthy, countries are embracing ways to enhance quality of care and keep patients safe, via mechanisms such as accreditation, clinical guidelines and hand hygiene campaigns. Two timely reminders are that, first, a population's health is not determined solely by the acute system, but is a product of inter-sectoral effort-that is, measures to alleviate poverty and provide good housing, education, nutrition, running water and sanitation across the population. Second, all reformers and advocates of better-quality of care should include well-designed evaluation in their initiatives. Too often, improvement is assumed, not measured. That is perhaps the key message.

  1. Impact of mentorship on WHO-AFRO Strengthening Laboratory Quality Improvement Process Towards Accreditation (SLIPTA

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    Talkmore Maruta


    Full Text Available Background: The improvment of the quality of testing services in public laboratories is a high priority in many countries. Consequently, initiatives to train laboratory staff on quality management are being implemented, for example, the World Health Organization Regional Headquarters for Africa (WHO-AFRO Strengthening Laboratory Management Towards Accreditation (SLMTA. Mentorship may be an effective way to augment these efforts. Methods: Mentorship was implemented at four hospital laboratories in Lesotho, three districts and one central laboratory, between June 2009 and December 2010. The mentorship model that was implemented had the mentor fully embedded within the operations of each of the laboratories. It was delivered in a series of two mentoring engagements of six and four week initial and follow-up visits respectively. In total, each laboratory received 10 weeks mentorship that was separated by 6–8 weeks. Quality improvements were measured at baseline and at intervals during the mentorship using the WHO-AFRO Strengthening Laboratory Quality Improvement Process Towards Accreditation (SLIPTA checklist and scoring system. Results: At the beginning of the mentorship, all laboratories were at the SLIPTA zero star rating. After the initial six weeks of mentorship, two of the three district laboratories had improved from zero to one (out of five star although the difference between their baseline (107.7 and the end of the six weeks (136.3 average scores was not statistically significant (p = 0.25. After 10 weeks of mentorship there was a significant improvement in average scores (182.3; p = 0.034 with one laboratory achieving WHO-AFRO three out of a possible five star status and the two remaining laboratories achieving a two star status. At Queen Elizabeth II (QE II Central Laboratory, the average baseline score was 44%, measured using a section-specific checklist. There was a significant improvement by five weeks (57.2%; p = 0.021. Conclusion

  2. Using creative problem solving (TRIZ) in improving the quality of hospital services. (United States)

    LariSemnani, Behrouz; Mohebbi Far, Rafat; Shalipoor, Elham; Mohseni, Mohammad


    TRIZ is an initiative and SERVQUAL is a structured methodology for quality improvement. Using these tools, inventive problem solving can be applied for quality improvement, and the highest quality can be reached using creative quality improvement methodology. The present study seeks to determine the priority of quality aspects of services provided for patients in the hospital as well as how TRIZ can help in improving the quality of those services. This Study is an applied research which used a dynamic qualitative descriptive survey method during year 2011. Statistical population includes every patient who visited in one of the University Hospitals from March 2011. There existed a big gap between patients' expectations from what seemingly is seen (the design of the hospital) and timely provision of services with their perceptions. Also, quality aspects of services were prioritized as follows: keeping the appearance of hospital (the design), accountability, assurance, credibility and having empathy. Thus, the only thing which mattered most for all staff and managers of studied hospital was the appearance of hospital as well as its staff look. This can grasp a high percentage of patients' satisfaction. By referring to contradiction matrix, the most important principles of TRIZ model were related to tangible factors including principles No. 13 (discarding and recovering), 25 (self-service), 35 (parameter changes), and 2 (taking out). Furthermore, in addition to these four principles, principle No. 24 (intermediary) was repeated most among the others. By utilizing TRIZ, hospital problems can be examined with a more open view, Go beyond The conceptual framework of the organization and responded more quickly to patients ' needs.

  3. Using Creative Problem Solving (TRIZ) in Improving the Quality of Hospital Services (United States)

    LariSemnani, Behrouz; Far, Rafat Mohebbi; Shalipoor, Elham; Mohseni, Mohammad


    TRIZ is an initiative and SERVQUAL is a structured methodology for quality improvement. Using these tools, inventive problem solving can be applied for quality improvement, and the highest quality can be reached using creative quality improvement methodology. The present study seeks to determine the priority of quality aspects of services provided for patients in the hospital as well as how TRIZ can help in improving the quality of those services. This Study is an applied research which used a dynamic qualitative descriptive survey method during year 2011. Statistical population includes every patient who visited in one of the University Hospitals from March 2011. There existed a big gap between patients’ expectations from what seemingly is seen (the design of the hospital) and timely provision of services with their perceptions. Also, quality aspects of services were prioritized as follows: keeping the appearance of hospital (the design), accountability, assurance, credibility and having empathy. Thus, the only thing which mattered most for all staff and managers of studied hospital was the appearance of hospital as well as its staff look. This can grasp a high percentage of patients’ satisfaction. By referring to contradiction matrix, the most important principles of TRIZ model were related to tangible factors including principles No. 13 (discarding and recovering), 25 (self-service), 35 (parameter changes), and 2 (taking out). Furthermore, in addition to these four principles, principle No. 24 (intermediary) was repeated most among the others. By utilizing TRIZ, hospital problems can be examined with a more open view, Go beyond The conceptual framework of the organization and responded more quickly to patients ’ needs. PMID:25560360

  4. Family physicians improve patient health care quality and outcomes. (United States)

    Bowman, Marjorie A; Neale, Anne Victoria


    This issue exemplifies family physicians' ability to provide great care and to continuously improve. For example, beyond other specialty care, the care provided by family physicians is associated with improved melanoma diagnosis and outcomes and improved preventive services for those with a history of breast cancer. Electronic health records are providing new avenues to both assess outcomes and influence care. However, to truly reward quality care, simplistic and readily measurable items such as laboratory results or assessment of the provision of preventive services must be adjusted for risk. Health insurance influences classic preventive care services more than personal health behaviors. The care provided at federally qualified health centers throughout the nation is highly appreciated by the people they serve and is not plagued by the types of disparities in other settings.

  5. Quality Improvement Project to Improve Patient Satisfaction With Pain Management: Using Human-Centered Design. (United States)

    Trail-Mahan, Tracy; Heisler, Scott; Katica, Mary


    In this quality improvement project, our health system developed a comprehensive, patient-centered approach to improving inpatient pain management and assessed its impact on patient satisfaction across 21 medical centers. Using human-centered design principles, a bundle of 6 individual and team nursing practices was developed. Patient satisfaction with pain management, as measured by the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems pain composite score, increased from the 25th to just under the 75th national percentile.

  6. Effectiveness of a quality improvement curriculum for medical students

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    Kimberly M. Tartaglia


    Full Text Available Introduction: As health systems find ways to improve quality of care, medical training programs are finding opportunities to prepare learners on principles of quality improvement (QI. The impact of QI curricula for medical students as measured by student learning is not well delineated. The aim of this study is to evaluate the effectiveness of a QI curriculum for senior medical students as measured by student knowledge and skills. Methods: This study was an observational study that involved a self-assessment and post-test Quality Improvement Knowledge Application Tool (QIKAT for intervention and control students. A QI curriculum consisting of online modules, live discussions, independent readings and reflective writing, and participation in a mentored QI project was offered to fourth-year medical students completing an honor's elective (intervention group. Senior medical students who received the standard QI curriculum only were recruited as controls. Results: A total of 22 intervention students and 12 control students completed the self-assessment and QIKAT. At baseline, there was no difference between groups in self-reported prior exposure to QI principles. Students in the intervention group reported more comfort with their skills in QI overall and in 9 of the 12 domains (p<0.05. Additionally, intervention students performed better in each of the three case scenarios (p<0.01. Discussion: A brief QI curriculum for senior medical students results in improved comfort and knowledge with QI principles. The strengths of our curriculum include effective use of classroom time and faculty mentorship with reliance on pre-existing online modules and written resources. Additionally, the curriculum is easily expandable to larger groups of students and transferable to other institutions.

  7. Quality improvement in radiography in a neonatal intensive care unit

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    Loovere, L.; Boyle, E.M. [Dept. of Pediatrics, McMaster Univ., Hamilton, Ontario (Canada); Blatz, S. [Dept. of Pediactrics, McMaster Children' s Hospital, Hamilton Health Sciences, Hamilton, Ontario (Canada); Bowslaugh, M.; Kereliuk, M. [Dept. of Radiology, Diagnostic Imaging, Hamilton Health Sciences, Hamilton, Ontario (Canada); Paes, B. [Dept. of Pediatrics, McMaster Univ., Hamilton, Ontario (Canada)], E-mail:


    The primary objective of this study was to ensure that X-rays performed consistently adhere to established technological quality standards and are achieved without compromising patient care while minimizing exposure risks. The secondary objective was to evaluate whether educational sessions targeting areas deemed suboptimal would facilitate improvement. A retrospective, 1-week review of all neonatal X-rays and documentation of clinical information on X-ray requisitions (n = 132) was completed in a tertiary care neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), by a single observer. Standards for X-ray evaluation were defined a priori based on radiographic principles and essential documented medical information for correct interpretation. Targeted areas for improvement were identified and addressed through brief educational sessions and printed pamphlets. The review was repeated after recommendations were implemented. 1 month (n = 93) and 1 year (n = 76) later. Improvements were evident in both the completion of X-ray requisitions and image quality. In particular, there was a statistically significant improvement in requisition legibility (P = 0.019), completeness of the medical history (P < 0.001), reduction in X-ray rotation (P < 0.001), collimation to the specific area of interest (P <0.001), gonadal shielding (P < 0.001), and decrease in monitor leads or artifacts obscuring views (P < 0.001). These improvements were sustained both 1 month and 1 year following the educational sessions. A neonatal X-ray audit is a simple, effective way to evaluate radiographic technique and encourage provision of basic clinical information for diagnostic interpretation by radiologists and neonatologists. As well, structured, collaborative educational sessions between radiology and neonatology staff appear to be a successful and sustainable method to effect overall improvement. (author)

  8. Improving urban air quality in China: Beijing case study. (United States)

    Hao, Jiming; Wang, Litao


    China is undergoing rapid urbanization because of unprecedented economic growth. As a result, many cities suffer from air pollution. Two-thirds of China's cities have not attained the ambient air quality standards applicable to urban residential areas (Grade II). Particulate matter (PM), rather than sulfur dioxide (SO2), is the major pollutant reflecting the shift from coal burning to mixed source pollution. In 2002, 63.2 and 22.4% of the monitored cities have PM and SO2 concentrations exceeding the Grade II standard, respectively. Nitrogen oxides (NOx) concentration kept a relatively stable level near the Grade II standard in the last decade and had an increasing potential in recent years because of the rapid motorization. In general, the air pollutants emission did not increase as quickly as the economic growth and energy consumption, and air quality in Chinese cities has improved to some extent. Beijing, a typical representative of rapidly developing cities, is an example to illustrate the possible options for urban air pollution control. Beijing's case provides hope that the challenges associated with improving air quality can be met during a period of explosive development and motorization.

  9. Improving urban air quality in China: Beijing case study

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    Jiming Hao; Litao Wang [Tsinghua University, Beijing (China). Department of Environmental Science and Engineering


    China is undergoing rapid urbanization because of unprecedented economic growth. As a result, many cities suffer from air pollution. Two-thirds of China's cities have not attained the ambient air quality standards applicable to urban residential areas (Grade II). Particulate matter (PM), rather than sulfur dioxide (SO{sub 2}), is the major pollutant reflecting the shift from coal burning to mixed source pollution. In 2002, 63.2 and 22.4% of the monitored cities have PM and SO{sub 2} concentrations exceeding the Grade II standard, respectively. Nitrogen oxides (NOx) concentration kept a relatively stable level near the Grade II standard in the last decade and had an increasing potential in recent years because of the rapid motorization. In general, the air pollutants emission did not increase as quickly as the economic growth and energy consumption, and air quality in Chinese cities has improved to some extent. Beijing, a typical representative of rapidly developing cities, is an example to illustrate the possible options for urban air pollution control. Beijing's case provides hope that the challenges associated with improving air quality can be met during a period of explosive development and motorization. 21 refs., 19 figs., 6 tabs.

  10. Improving Service Quality by Using Organizational Citizenship Behavior: Iranian Evidence

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    Nour-Mohammad Yaghoubi


    Full Text Available Nowadays, with increasing service industries, service marketing and service quality have become an important challenge to organizations. The attempts of organizations in this situation are witnesses to this matter. In the past years, the organizations tried to reach service quality appropriation and satisfaction of self-external customers by concepts and approaches of external marketing. One of the important features of service is the direct interaction with customers and having customer-oriented behaviors. Furthermore, with introducing the internal marketing and the important roles of it, an internal customer of organizations, on achievement of organizational plans, was noted to internal marketing more and more than before. So, the study researchers are going to argue about internal marketing and the effect of it on organizational citizenship behaviors and service quality and the important role of it on development and improvement of service quality by using organizational citizenship behaviors. For this purpose, first the researchers have studied internal marketing and its important components and then have done the same to the other items and finally have applied a quantitative study on all of them. It should be mentioned that the researchers have employed SPSS 17.0 and Lisrel 8.54 for data analysis. The findings of the present study illustrated that there is an appropriate interaction among all the items, which has been studied here and the structural equations for the conceptual framework of this study are goodness of fit.

  11. Geocoding coronial data: tools and techniques to improve data quality. (United States)

    Freestone, Darren; Williamson, Dianne; Wollersheim, Dennis


    Clinical, administrative and demographic health information is fundamental to understanding the nature of health and evaluating the effectiveness of efforts to reduce morbidity and mortality of the population. The demographic data item 'location' is an integral part of any injury surveillance tool or injury prevention strategy. The true value of location data can only be realised once these data have been appropriately classified and quality assured. Geocoding as a means of classifying location is increasingly used in various health fields to enable spatial analysis of data. This article reports on research carried out in Australia at the National Coroners Information System (NCIS). Trends in the use of NCIS location-based data by researchers were identified. The research also aimed to establish the factors that impacted on the quality of geocoded data and the extent of this impact. A systematic analysis of the geocoding process identified source documentation, data cleaning, and software settings as key factors impacting on data quality. Understanding and application of these processes can improve data quality and therefore inform the analysis and interpretation of these data by researchers.

  12. Overarching goals: a strategy for improving healthcare quality and safety? (United States)

    Nanji, Karen C; Ferris, Timothy G; Torchiana, David F; Meyer, Gregg S


    The management literature reveals that many successful organisations have strategic plans that include a bold 'stretch-goal' to stimulate progress over a ten-to-thirty-year period. A stretch goal is clear, compelling and easily understood. It serves as a unifying focal point for organisational efforts. The ambitiousness of such goals has been emphasised with the phrase Big Hairy Audacious Goal ('BHAG'). President Kennedy's proclamation in 1961 that 'this Nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to earth' provides a famous example. This goal energised the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and it captured the attention of the American public and resulted in one of the largest accomplishments of any organisation. The goal set by Sony, a small, cash-strapped electronics company in the 1950s, to change the poor image of Japanese products around the world represents a classic BHAG. Few examples of quality goals that conform to the BHAG definition exist in the healthcare literature. However, the concept may provide a useful framework for organisations seeking to transform the quality of care they deliver. This review examines the merits and cautions of setting overarching quality goals to catalyse quality improvement efforts, and assists healthcare organisations with determining whether to adopt these goals.

  13. The effectiveness of service delivery initiatives at improving patients' waiting times in clinical radiology departments: a systematic review. (United States)

    Olisemeke, B; Chen, Y F; Hemming, K; Girling, A


    We reviewed the literature for the impact of service delivery initiatives (SDIs) on patients' waiting times within radiology departments. We searched MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, INSPEC and The Cochrane Library for relevant articles published between 1995 and February, 2013. The Cochrane EPOC risk of bias tool was used to assess the risk of bias on studies that met specified design criteria. Fifty-seven studies met the inclusion criteria. The types of SDI implemented included extended scope practice (ESP, three studies), quality management (12 studies), productivity-enhancing technologies (PETs, 29 studies), multiple interventions (11 studies), outsourcing and pay-for-performance (one study each). The uncontrolled pre- and post-intervention and the post-intervention designs were used in 54 (95%) of the studies. The reporting quality was poor: many of the studies did not test and/or report the statistical significance of their results. The studies were highly heterogeneous, therefore meta-analysis was inappropriate. The following type of SDIs showed promising results: extended scope practice; quality management methodologies including Six Sigma, Lean methodology, and continuous quality improvement; productivity-enhancing technologies including speech recognition reporting, teleradiology and computerised physician order entry systems. We have suggested improved study design and the mapping of the definitions of patient waiting times in radiology to generic timelines as a starting point for moving towards a situation where it becomes less restrictive to compare and/or pool the results of future studies in a meta-analysis.


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    M. Shilpa


    Full Text Available Robust design methodology aims at reducing the variability in the product performance in the presence of noise factors. Experiments involving simultaneous optimization of more than one quality characteristic are known as multiresponse experiments which are used in the development and improvement of industrial processes and products. In this paper, robust design methodology is applied to optimize the process parameters during a particular operation of rotary driving shaft manufacturing process. The three important quality characteristics of the shaft considered here are of type Nominal-the-best, Smaller-the-better and Fraction defective. Simultaneous optimization of these responses is carried out by identifying the control parameters and conducting the experimentation using L9 orthogonal array.

  15. Organizational culture, continuous quality improvement, and medication administration error reporting. (United States)

    Wakefield, B J; Blegen, M A; Uden-Holman, T; Vaughn, T; Chrischilles, E; Wakefield, D S


    This study explores the relationships among measures of nurses' perceptions of organizational culture, continuous quality improvement (CQI) implementation, and medication administration error (MAE) reporting. Hospital-based nurses were surveyed using measures of organizational culture and CQI implementation. These data were combined with previously collected data on perceptions of MAE reporting. A group-oriented culture had a significant positive correlation with CQI implementation, whereas hierarchical and rational culture types were negatively correlated with CQI implementation. Higher barriers to reporting MAE were associated with lower perceived reporting rates. A group-oriented culture and a greater extent of CQI implementation were positively (but not significantly) associated with the estimated overall percentage of MAEs reported. We conclude that health care organizations have implemented CQI programs, yet barriers remain relative to MAE reporting. There is a need to assess the reliability, validity, and completeness of key quality assessment and risk management data.

  16. Integrating health promotion with quality improvement in a Swedish hospital. (United States)

    Astnell, Sandra; von Thiele Schwarz, Ulrica; Hasson, Henna; Augustsson, Hanna; Stenfors-Hayes, Terese


    Integration of workplace employee health promotion (HP) and occupational health and safety (OHS) work into organizational quality improvement systems is suggested as a way to strengthen HP and OHS activities in an organization. The aim of this article was to study what consequences integration of HP, OHS and a quality improvement system called kaizen has on the frequency and type of HP and OHS activities. A quasi-experimental study design was used where an integration of the three systems for HP, OHS respectively kaizen, was performed at six intervention units at a Swedish hospital. The remaining six units served as controls. Document analysis of all employees' written improvement suggestions (kaizen notes) during 2013 was conducted. The findings show that the intervention group had more suggestions concerning HP and OHS (n = 114) when compared with the control group (n = 78) and a greater variety of HP and OHS suggestions. In addition, only the intervention group had included HP aspects. In both groups, most kaizen notes with health consideration had a preventive focus rather than rehabilitative. The intervention, i.e. the integration of HP, OHS and kaizen work, had a favourable effect on HP and OHS work when compared with the controls. The results of the study support that this system can work in practice at hospitals.

  17. Issues of therapeutic communication relevant for improving quality of care. (United States)

    Popa-Velea, O; Purcărea, V L


    Communication issues are extensively considered a topic of high interest for improving the efficacy of the therapeutic act. This article aimed to overview several issues of therapeutic communication relevant for improving quality of care. A number of 15 bibliographic resources on these topics published in peer-reviewed journals between 1975 and 2010, and indexed in PubMed, ProQuest and EBSCO databases were examined, to seek for evidence regarding these data. Results highlight a number of communication problems commonly reported in the literature, such as the lack of physician communicational skills or their deterioration, the persistence of an asymmetric therapeutic communicational model, communication obstacles brought by the disease itself or by several variables pertaining to the patient, including specific demographic and psychological contexts. Equally, literature reports ways of improving therapeutic communication, such as optimizing the clinical interview, better time management techniques or assertiveness. Integration of communication training in the bio-psycho-social model of care and monitoring parameters like adherence and quality of life as tools reflecting also a good therapeutic communication can be valuable future approaches of obtaining better results in this area.

  18. The Importance of Employment Contract for Umsida Quality Employees Improvement

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    Noor Fatimah Mediawati


    Full Text Available The absence of employment contracts in UMSIDA recognized cause some problems. Especially in improving the performance of employees. Issues a little more disturbing harmonious labor relations between employees and UMSIDA. In the terminology of the Labour Act, employment contract terms it is known as the Employment Agreement. Where the existence of labor agreement / contract employment is expected to harmonize the working relationship with the employer in accordance with the applicable rules. The existence of employment contracts is also a legal instrument which according to researchers ought to be put forward in efforts to increase the qualifications and competence of employees. By contract it will also avoid things that are not desirable in an employment relationship, because each party will always carry out their rights and responsibilities are aligned and balanced. Tranquility in the work and the guarantee of legal protection are expected to improve employee performance especially towards quality UMSIDA 2020. So this study explored further the urgency employment contract once its design. How To Cite: Mediawati, N., & Phahlevy, R. (2015. The Importance of Employment Contract for Umsida Quality Employees Improvement. Rechtsidee, 2(2, 141-156. doi:

  19. Initiatives to Improve Feedback Culture in the Final Year of a Veterinary Program



    Despite the recognized importance of feedback in education, student satisfaction with the feedback process in medical and veterinary programs is often disappointing. We undertook various initiatives to try to improve the feedback culture in the final clinical year of the veterinary program at the University of Bristol, focusing on formative verbal feedback. The initiatives included E-mailed guidelines to staff and students, a faculty development workshop, and a reflective portfolio task for s...

  20. A Count for Quality: Child Care Center Directors on Rating and Improvement Systems (United States)

    Schulman, Karen; Matthews, Hannah; Blank, Helen; Ewen, Danielle


    Quality Rating and Improvement Systems (QRIS)--a strategy to improve families' access to high-quality child care--assess the quality of child care programs, offer incentives and assistance to programs to improve their ratings, and give information to parents about the quality of child care. These systems are operating in a growing number of…

  1. Corporatization as a means of improving water quality: the experience in Victoria, Australia. (United States)

    Martin, Narelle

    Factors including fragmentation, a lack of direction, poor accountability, poor water quality, and a sizable state government subsidy contributed to the rural water industry in Victoria, Australia, in 1993. In 1993 the state government set out parameters for reform to change the size, structure, performance, and culture of the water industry. The path taken was not privatization, but corporatization. Tools used included amalgamation of organizations; separating water provisions from local government; changing the composition and reporting mechanisms of the boards; establishing clear benchmarks and performance criteria; making information publicly available; and providing a commercial orientation. The outcomes of the reforms were to be a focus on water quality and effluent management. In 2001, 15 water authorities were in place. There were significant improvements in accountability, finances, and performance. The authorities provided information on performance to both the state and the public. Reductions of operating costs have been in the range of 20-35%, with savings put back into new infrastructure. Water quality has significantly improved in a number of parameters and effluent management has also improved. This paper describes the challenges faced before the reform process, the reforms initiated, and the outcomes. It argues that privatization is not the only path to improvement: Developing a corporate structure and accountability can also deliver substantial improvements.

  2. Comprehensive Assessment of Seawater Quality Based on an Improved Attribute Recognition Model

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHANG Libing; CHENG Jilin; JIN Juliang; JIANG Xiaohong


    The attribute recognition model (ARM) has been widely used to make comprehensive assessment in many engineering fields, such as environment, ecology, and economy. However, large numbers of experiments indicate that the value of weight vector has no relativity to its initial value but depends on the data of Quality Standard and actual samples. In the present study, the ARM is enhanced with the technique of data driving, which means some more groups of data from the Quality Standard are selected with the uniform random method to make the calculation of weight values more rational and more scientific. This improved attribute recognition model (IARM) is applied to a real case of assessment on seawater quality. The given example shows that the IARM has the merits of being simple in principle, easy to operate, and capable of producing objective results, and is therefore of use in evaluation problems in marine environment science.

  3. Lead/acid batteries in systems to improve power quality (United States)

    Taylor, P.; Butler, P.; Nerbun, W.

    Increasing dependence on computer technology is driving needs for extremely high-quality power to prevent loss of information, material, and workers' time that represent billions of dollars annually. This cost has motivated commercial and Federal research and development of energy storage systems that detect and respond to power-quality failures in milliseconds. Electrochemical batteries are among the storage media under investigation for these systems. Battery energy storage systems that employ either flooded lead/acid or valve-regulated lead/acid battery technologies are becoming commercially available to capture a share of this emerging market. Cooperative research and development between the US Department of Energy and private industry have led to installations of lead/acid-based battery energy storage systems to improve power quality at utility and industrial sites and commercial development of fully integrated, modular battery energy storage system products for power quality. One such system by AC Battery Corporation, called the PQ2000, is installed at a test site at Pacific Gas and Electric Company (San Ramon, CA, USA) and at a customer site at Oglethorpe Power Corporation (Tucker, GA, USA). The PQ2000 employs off-the-shelf power electronics in an integrated methodology to control the factors that affect the performance and service life of production-model, low-maintenance, flooded lead/acid batteries. This system, and other members of this first generation of lead/acid-based energy storage systems, will need to compete vigorously for a share of an expanding, yet very aggressive, power quality market.

  4. Sleep Quality Improves During Treatment With Bryophyllum pinnatum (United States)

    Hassani, Taziri Al; Müller-Hübenthal, Boris; Pittl, Sandra; Kuck, Angela; Meden, Harald; Eberhard, Jutta; Decker, Michael; Fürer, Karin; von Mandach, Ursula


    Hypothesis. Cancer patients frequently suffer from poor sleep quality. Bryophyllum pinnatum is a herbal medication used in anthroposophic medicine, which has been shown to be associated with improvements in sleep quality during pregnancy with only few and minor or moderate side-effects reported. In this study, the sleep quality of cancer patients during treatment with B pinnatum was investigated. Study Design. In this prospective, observational study, cancer patients suffering from sleep problems were treated with B pinnatum (350 mg tablets, corresponding to 50% of leaf pressed juice [Weleda AG, Arlesheim, Switzerland], dosage at physician’s consideration, but most frequently 2 tablets with evening meal and 2 before going to bed). Methods. Sleep quality (Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index [PSQI]), daily sleepiness (Epworth Sleeping Scale [ESS]), and fatigue (Fatigue Severity Scale [FSS]) were assessed at the beginning of the treatment and after 3 weeks. Possible adverse drug reactions perceived by the patients during the treatment were recorded. From the 28 recruited patients, 20 completed both questionnaires and were considered in the present analysis. Data are expressed as mean ± standard deviation. Results. Patients were 61 ± 10.4 years old and the majority were female (17 out of 20). During treatment with B pinnatum, the PSQI decreased from 12.2 ± 3.62 to 9.1 ± 3.61 (P < .01), and ESS changed from 8.4 ± 3.18 to 7.1 ± 3.98 (P < .05). There was no change in FSS. The treatment was well tolerated by the majority of patients, with only 6 patients reporting discomfort that might have been caused by B pinnatum (fatigue n = 3, dry throat n = 1, agitation n = 1, difficult digestion n = 1). No serious adverse drug reactions were detected. Conclusion. B pinnatum may be a suitable treatment for sleep problems of cancer patients. Controlled, randomized clinical trials of the use of B pinnatum in sleep disorders are urgently needed. PMID:25873294

  5. Reliably Addressing "What Matters" Through a Quality Improvement Process. (United States)

    Rutherford, Patricia A


    Oncology nurses have a critical role in mitigating the intense vulnerability, loss of control, and fear of the unknown that characterizes the experiences of patients with cancer and their family members. Reliably inquiring about the issues that are at the forefront for patients and their loved ones can encourage a deeper dialogue-where nurses can understand and address the issues that are most important to them. A practical quality improvement approach can help to ensure that processes are in place to assist nurses in devoting time to reliably inquire about "what matters" to each patient at every encounter.

  6. Temperature Field for Improving Internal Quality of Stretched Round Billet

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    QIU Ping; XIAO Hong


    Based on the rigid-plastic theory, using a coupled thermomechanieal model, the stretching process of a cir-cular section billet is simulated by means of FEM software Deform-2D. Through the distribution of internal stress fields of stretched round billet, it is found that the shear stress field is the main factor to induce Mannesmann's effect. The simulation results show that a reasonable distribution of the temperature field may improve the internal quality of the circular section billet in the stretching process.

  7. A New Model for Software Engineering Systems Quality Improvement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahmad A. Al-Rababah


    Full Text Available In the continuing effort to improve the system analysis and design process, several different approaches have been developed. This study will propose a new process methodology solves some problems in traditional system development methodologies it will study the strength and limitation of existing system development methodologies from traditional waterfall to iterative model including (Prototyping, Spiral, Rapid Application Development, XP and RUP to Agility. Propose a new methodology focus on produce a high quality product and suitable for all kind of project. Compare the new methodology with others to view some features that is differentiating it from previous methodologies.

  8. The Quality Improvement of Stony Construction and Demolition Waste (CDW)

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    XING Wei-hong; Alex Fraaij; Hans Pietersen; Peter Rem; Koen Van Dijk


    Worldwide construction and demolition waste (CDW) is currently dumped. To close the building cycle and the building materials cycle by recycling CDW in high technical applications, the technical quality of stony materials must be improved. For this purpose, concrete rubbles and brick rubbles, the two major stony constituents of CDW, should be separated from each other. Based on the differences in density and content of Fe2O3 between the two materials, a wet method of jigging and a dry method of magnetic separation are effective,tested.

  9. Perinatal information systems for quality improvement: visions for today. (United States)

    Slagle, T A


    Today clinical information is used for a multitude of purposes beyond patient care documentation including quality review and improvement processes, allocation of resources, budgetary and long-term planning, productivity measurement, and justification to payers for services provided. Providers in perinatal medicine are faced with the challenge of finding methods to meet these information needs. Case examples of the different approaches to collecting and using obstetric and neonatal information are described. The role of computer-based patient records is outlined and solutions available to perinatal medicine are reviewed.

  10. Learning leadership skills in practice through quality improvement. (United States)

    Gamble, James; Vaux, Emma


    The development of leadership skills in doctors in training is essential to support both their professional development and the future supply of clinical leaders the NHS so desperately needs. There is, however, limited opportunity in current training programmes for trainees to learn and develop these skills, and what opportunity there is has often focused on management rather than leadership skills. Involvement in trainee-led supported quality improvement projects can teach these skills. We summarise the current limitations in leadership training and discuss how the College's 'Learning To Make a Difference' programme, and others like it, are helping to teach leadership.

  11. Evidence-based quality improvement: the state of the science. (United States)

    Shojania, Kaveh G; Grimshaw, Jeremy M


    Routine practice fails to incorporate research evidence in a timely and reliable fashion. Many quality improvement (QI) efforts aim to close these gaps between clinical research and practice. However, in sharp contrast to the paradigm of evidence-based medicine, these efforts often proceed on the basis of intuition and anecdotal accounts of successful strategies for changing provider behavior or achieving organizational change. We review problems with current approaches to QI research and outline the steps required to make QI efforts based as much on evidence as the practices they seek to implement.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Navid Afkar


    Full Text Available Transportation Network Design Problem (TNDP aims to select the best project sets among a number of new projects. Recently, metaheuristic methods are applied to solve TNDP in the sense of finding better solutions sooner. PSO as a metaheuristic method is based on stochastic optimization and is a parallel revolutionary computation technique. The PSO system initializes with a number of random solutions and seeks for optimal solution by improving generations. This paper studies the behavior of PSO on account of improving initial generation and fitness value domain to find better solutions in comparison with previous attempts.

  13. Air Quality in Mexico City: Policies Implemented for its Improvement (United States)

    Paramo, V.


    Ozone and suspended particles (PM) are two pollutants in the atmosphere of Mexico City Metropolitan Area (MCMA) that still exceed the recommended Mexican health standards. The other criteria pollutants very seldom exceed their corresponding standards. In 2006, the maximum ozone concentrations were above the health standard (0.11 ppm in 1 hour) during 59 percent of the days for an average of 2.2 hours and 130 points of the Air Quality Index (Índice Metropolitano de la Calidad del Aire - IMECA). In contrast, in 1991, 98 percent of the days exceeded the ozone health standard for an average of 6.6 hours and 200 IMECA points. With regards to PM10, in 2006, 80 percent of the sampled concentrations were below the health standard of 120 µg/m3 in 24 hours. However, the annual health standard of 50 µg/m3 is still exceeded. The air quality management in the MCMA is a difficult task due to several adverse factors. The main one is the large population that increased from nearly 15 million in 1992 to more than 18 million at present. As a result, the urban area grows in the adjoined municipalities of the State of Mexico. The vehicular fleet increases also to almost 4 million and the number of industrial facilities is at present 50,000. Consequently, the fuel consumption is very high. The daily energy consumption is estimated to be 44 million liters of equivalent of gasoline. Despite the fact that the air quality has improved in recent years, the related health standards are still exceeded and therefore it is necessary to continue applying the most cost-effective actions to improve the environment quality. Some actions that have contributed most to the reduction of pollutant emissions are the following: Continuous update of the inspection and maintenance program of the vehicular fleet; substitution of the catalytic converters at the end of their useful life; self-regulation of the diesel fleet; use of alternative fuels; update the No-Driving-Day program; establishment of more

  14. Iterative reconstruction techniques for computed tomography part 2: initial results in dose reduction and image quality

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Willemink, Martin J.; Leiner, Tim; Jong, Pim A. de; Nievelstein, Rutger A.J.; Schilham, Arnold M.R. [Utrecht University Medical Center, Department of Radiology, P.O. Box 85500, Utrecht (Netherlands); Heer, Linda M. de [Cardiothoracic Surgery, Utrecht (Netherlands); Budde, Ricardo P.J. [Utrecht University Medical Center, Department of Radiology, P.O. Box 85500, Utrecht (Netherlands); Gelre Hospital, Department of Radiology, Apeldoorn (Netherlands)


    To present the results of a systematic literature search aimed at determining to what extent the radiation dose can be reduced with iterative reconstruction (IR) for cardiopulmonary and body imaging with computed tomography (CT) in the clinical setting and what the effects on image quality are with IR versus filtered back-projection (FBP) and to provide recommendations for future research on IR. We searched Medline and Embase from January 2006 to January 2012 and included original research papers concerning IR for CT. The systematic search yielded 380 articles. Forty-nine relevant studies were included. These studies concerned: the chest(n = 26), abdomen(n = 16), both chest and abdomen(n = 1), head(n = 4), spine(n = 1), and no specific area (n = 1). IR reduced noise and artefacts, and it improved subjective and objective image quality compared to FBP at the same dose. Conversely, low-dose IR and normal-dose FBP showed similar noise, artefacts, and subjective and objective image quality. Reported dose reductions ranged from 23 to 76 % compared to locally used default FBP settings. However, IR has not yet been investigated for ultra-low-dose acquisitions with clinical diagnosis and accuracy as endpoints. Benefits of IR include improved subjective and objective image quality as well as radiation dose reduction while preserving image quality. Future studies need to address the value of IR in ultra-low-dose CT with clinically relevant endpoints. (orig.)

  15. Using lean methodology to teach quality improvement to internal medicine residents at a safety net hospital. (United States)

    Weigel, Charlene; Suen, Winnie; Gupte, Gouri


    The overall objective of this initiative was to develop a quality improvement (QI) curriculum using Lean methodology for internal medicine residents at Boston Medical Center, a safety net academic hospital. A total of 90 residents and 8 School of Public Health students participated in a series of four, 60- to 90-minute interactive and hands-on QI sessions. Seventeen QI project plans were created and conducted over a 4-month period. The curriculum facilitated internal medicine residents' learning about QI and development of positive attitudes toward QI (assessed using pre- and post-attitude surveys) and exposed them to an interprofessional team structure that duplicates future working relationships. This QI curriculum can be an educational model of how health care trainees can work collaboratively to improve health care quality.

  16. Quality improvement in small office settings: an examination of successful practices

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    Sofaer Shoshanna


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Physicians in small to moderate primary care practices in the United States (U.S. ( Methods We undertook a qualitative study, based on semi-structured, open-ended interviews conducted with practices (N = 39 that used performance data to drive quality improvement activities. Results Physicians indicated that benefits to performing measurement and QI included greater practice efficiency, patient and staff retention, and higher staff and clinician satisfaction with practice. Internal facilitators included the designation of a practice champion, cooperation of other physicians and staff, and the involvement of practice leaders. Time constraints, cost of activities, problems with information management and or technology, lack of motivated staff, and a lack of financial incentives were commonly reported as barriers. Conclusion These findings shed light on how physicians engage in quality improvement activities, and may help raise awareness of and aid in the implementation of future initiatives in small practices more generally.

  17. The impact of a large-scale quality improvement programme on work engagement: Preliminary results from a national cross-sectional-survey of the 'Productive Ward'

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    White, Mark


    Quality improvement (QI) Programmes, like the Productive Ward: Releasing-time-to-care initiative, aim to \\'engage\\' and \\'empower\\' ward teams to actively participate, innovate and lead quality improvement at the front line. However, little is known about the relationship and impact that QI work has on the \\'engagement\\' of the clinical teams who participate and vice-versa.

  18. Is Physical Activity a Good Way to Improve Quality of Life in the Elder Population?

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    Teresa Bento


    Full Text Available Background: Although evidence demonstrates that physical activity beneficially influences major chronic illnesses, older adults remain sedentary. Many interventions to increase physical activity intend to reduce disease complications as well as improve quality of life by enhancing physical function in our even more aging society. Objectives: The purpose of this study was to summarize knowledge on randomized controlled trials studying the effects of physical activity interventions on quality of life in the elder population. Methods: Randomized controlled trials, systematic reviews or meta-analysis were searched in the Pubmed data base. Search terms: “quality of life”, “intervention” and “physical activity” were used to identify English written articles, with humans older than 65 years. Results: From the initial screening of 234 titles, only 5 articles met the inclusion criteria and were included in the final analysis. Conclusions: Physical activity interventions seem to have a slight effect on physical function and in improving quality of life of people aged 65 and over. More intervention studies involving physical activity in older people should include measures of quality of life as primary outcome, as well as a standardization of measures would help to compare results and enlarge the evidence base in this area.



    Catalina Soriana Sitnikov


    Nowadays, quality is often divided into service quality and product quality. The dimensions of quality of service are quite different from the quality of product due to the main difference between services and products (service intangibility and the customer who can use it only once). Customer satisfaction is one of the topics related with the quality due to the main measurement of quality is customer service. The main question about quality service is what the customer expects to get from th...

  20. Implementation of quality improvement techniques for management and technical processes in the ACRV project (United States)

    Raiman, Laura B.


    Total Quality Management (TQM) is a cooperative form of doing business that relies on the talents of everyone in an organization to continually improve quality and productivity, using teams and an assortment of statistical and measurement tools. The objective of the activities described in this paper was to implement effective improvement tools and techniques in order to build work processes which support good management and technical decisions and actions which are crucial to the success of the ACRV project. The objectives were met by applications in both the technical and management areas. The management applications involved initiating focused continuous improvement projects with widespread team membership. The technical applications involved applying proven statistical tools and techniques to the technical issues associated with the ACRV Project. Specific activities related to the objective included working with a support contractor team to improve support processes, examining processes involved in international activities, a series of tutorials presented to the New Initiatives Office and support contractors, a briefing to NIO managers, and work with the NIO Q+ Team. On the technical side, work included analyzing data from the large-scale W.A.T.E.R. test, landing mode trade analyses, and targeting probability calculations. The results of these efforts will help to develop a disciplined, ongoing process for producing fundamental decisions and actions that shape and guide the ACRV organization .

  1. SRGM Analyzers Tool of SDLC for Software Improving Quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mr. Girish Nille


    Full Text Available Software Reliability Growth Models (SRGM have been developed to estimate software reliability measures such as software failure rate, number of remaining faults and software reliability. In this paper, the software analyzers tool proposed for deriving several software reliability growth models based on Enhanced Non-homogeneous Poisson Process (ENHPP in the presence of imperfect debugging and error generation. The proposed models are initially formulated for the case when there is no differentiation between failure observation and fault removal testing processes and then this extended for the case when there is a clear differentiation between failure observation and fault removal testing processes. Many Software Reliability Growth Models (SRGM have been developed to describe software failures as a random process and can be used to measure the development status during testing. With SRGM software consultants can easily measure (or evaluate the software reliability (or quality and plot software reliability growth charts.

  2. A methodology for evaluating air pollution strategies to improve the air quality in Mexico City

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Barrera-Roldan, A.S.; Guzman, F. [Instituto Mexicano de Petroleo, Mexico City (Mexico); Hardie, R.W.; Thayer, G.R. [Los Alamos National Lab., NM (United States)


    The Mexico City Air Quality Research Initiative has developed a methodology to assist decision makers in determining optimum pollution control strategies for atmospheric pollutants. The methodology introduces both objective and subjective factors in the comparison of various strategies for improving air quality. Strategies or group of options are first selected using linear programming. These strategies are then compared using Multi-Attribute Decision Analysis. The decision tree for the Multi-Attribute Decision Analysis was generated by a panel of experts representing the organizations in Mexico that are responsible for formulating policy on air quality improvement. Three sample strategies were analyzed using the methodology: one to reduce ozone by 33% using the most cost effective group of options, the second to reduce ozone by 43% using the most cost effective group of options and the third to reduce ozone by 43% emphasizing the reduction of emissions from industrial sources. Of the three strategies, the analysis indicated that strategy 2 would be the preferred strategy for improving air quality in Mexico City.

  3. Quality of life is social--towards an improvement of social abilities in patients with epilepsy. (United States)

    Szemere, Emily; Jokeit, Hennric


    Quality of life (QoL) for people with epilepsy is considered worse than the condition's clinical and medical prognosis would predict. Quantity and quality of social interaction considerably determine QoL. Research shows that a significant proportion of patients with epilepsy experience difficulties with social functioning that is thought to be related to impaired QoL. The aim of this review article is to provide an evidence base for conceptualising and developing interventions to improve quality of life through social functioning, for adults with epilepsy. Previous and current research is considered initially with regards to why such difficulties arise and established interventions that address social competence and functioning are reviewed and explored from the field of schizophrenia, a condition also associated with similar difficulties in social cognition, cognition and negative symptoms. The paper considers the advantages and disadvantages of these interventions, the outcomes and emerging research in this area. Positive findings are found from interventional studies in schizophrenia such as the enhancing potential and generalisation of training in social cognition, the benefits of an integrated approach to improving social functioning and proposal of 'online' interaction approaches. These findings provide interesting and exciting directions for the ultimate goal towards interventions for the improvement of social functioning and quality of life in patients with epilepsy. This is of particular significance as at present there is currently no such dedicated program for people with epilepsy.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lăcrămioara RADOMIR


    Full Text Available The purpose of this study is twofold: 1. examine the relationship betweenservice quality dimensions and customer satisfaction with bank territorialunits; 2. establish which quality measure method out of the four considered inthis study should be applied in order to better determine the areas that needfurther improvement and investment. In this respect, we performed PrincipalComponent Regression (PCR and considered direct importance andperformance measures as well. Our results reveal that human resourceshave the greatest impact on customers’ satisfaction with bank territorial unitsand that both “Convenience and Efficiency” and “Bank personnel” are thedimensions that bank management should consider in their efforts to improveand maintain the service quality level. To the best of our knowledge, this isthe first study which tries to emphasize the relationship between servicequality dimensions and Romanian customers’ satisfaction with bank territorialunits. The main limit of the study lies in the fact that data were collectedamong the customers of a single bank. Nevertheless, it provides valuableinformation about the Romanian market and ought to be considered astarting point for further studies.

  5. Improvement of Power Quality Using a Hybrid Interline UPQC

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    Full Text Available This paper proposed the reduced rating star connected transformer based interline unified power quality conditioner. This work comprises of unified power quality conditioner connected between the two feeders, star connected transformer and LC filter. This hybrid approach significantly improves the performance of UPQC under unbalance source voltage condition. The UPQC adopted to compensate current and voltage-quality problems of sensitive loads and suppressing the load current harmonics under distorted supply conditions. The series converter control strategy is based on the fuzzy-logic controller. The extensive simulation results have carried out in MATLAB/Simulink environment power system blockset toolboxes. From the results it has shown that hybrid interline UPQC achieves superior capability of mitigating the effects of voltage sag/swell and suppressing the load current harmonics, phase current harmonics and neutral current under distorted supply conditions. To validate the results produced by the proposed method, it is compared with the conventional UPQC method and better results obtained from the hybrid approach.

  6. Improving Quality of Service from TCP/IP Performance Degradation

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    Full Text Available TCP is currently the dominate congestion control protocol for the Internet. However, as the Internet evolves into a high-speed wired-cum-wireless hybrid network, performance degradation problems of TCP have appeared, such as underutilizing high-speed links, regarding wireless loss as congestion signal, and unfairness among flows with different RTTs. In order to improve the quality of service for such highspeed hybrid networks, we propose a router-assisted congestion control protocol called Quick Flow Control Protocol (QFCP. The convergence of many traditional services over IPbased infrastructures drastically increases the amount of IP data traffic to be delivered to user clients, thus raising questions about the management of quality of service in such networks. Quality of service will be of primary importance in order to ensure right operation, and to face the occurrence of congestion conditions, due to bandwidth demandingmultimedia services. in this paper, shows that QFCP can significantly shorten flow completion time, fairly allocate bandwidth resource, and be robust to non-congestion related loss. Also we consider a possible scenarios in which multiple multimedia and control streams are conveyed over the same HAN, and study a possible solution for the implementation of an easily manageable QoS framework, that relies on a QoS router based on open source software.

  7. Combating the 'Sick Building Syndrome' by Improving Indoor Air Quality

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    Pongchai Nimcharoenwon


    Full Text Available Research indicates that many of symptoms attributed to the Sick Building Syndrome in air-conditioned office buildings are a result of considerably reduced negative ions in the internal atmosphere and that replacing the depleted negative ions can improve indoor air quality. This paper describes a method used to develop a formula (DOF-NIL formula for calculating the amount of negative ions to be added to air-conditioned buildings, to improve air quality. The formula enables estimates to be made based on how negative ions in the air are reduced by three main factors namely, Video Display Terminals (VDT; heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC and Building Contents (BC. Calculations for a typical air-conditioned office, are compared with an Air Ion Counter instrument. The results show that the formula, when applied to a typical air-conditioned office, provides an accurate estimate for design purposes. The typical rate of additional negative-ions (ion-generating for a negative ion condition is found to be approximately 12.0 billion ions/hr for at least 4 hour ion-generating.

  8. Systematic infrared image quality improvement using deep learning based techniques (United States)

    Zhang, Huaizhong; Casaseca-de-la-Higuera, Pablo; Luo, Chunbo; Wang, Qi; Kitchin, Matthew; Parmley, Andrew; Monge-Alvarez, Jesus


    Infrared thermography (IRT, or thermal video) uses thermographic cameras to detect and record radiation in the longwavelength infrared range of the electromagnetic spectrum. It allows sensing environments beyond the visual perception limitations, and thus has been widely used in many civilian and military applications. Even though current thermal cameras are able to provide high resolution and bit-depth images, there are significant challenges to be addressed in specific applications such as poor contrast, low target signature resolution, etc. This paper addresses quality improvement in IRT images for object recognition. A systematic approach based on image bias correction and deep learning is proposed to increase target signature resolution and optimise the baseline quality of inputs for object recognition. Our main objective is to maximise the useful information on the object to be detected even when the number of pixels on target is adversely small. The experimental results show that our approach can significantly improve target resolution and thus helps making object recognition more efficient in automatic target detection/recognition systems (ATD/R).

  9. Analysis of Power Quality Based on Real Data and Quality Improvement at Campus Distribution System (United States)

    Kawasaki, Shoji; Matsuki, Junya; Hayashi, Yasuhiro; Ito, Akitoshi

    In recent years, a lot of equipments have been made using the inverter technology from home electric appliances to office automation apparatuses and industrial equipments with the development of power electronics technology. The voltage distortion of a distribution system has increased due to the harmonic currents generated from these apparatuses, and the increase in harmonics continues to be expected. In addition, the distribution system forms the circuit of harmonic distortion expansion by the prevalence of static capacitor without L for power factor improvement. Moreover, the voltage imbalance occurs by diversification of loads or imbalanced connection of single-phase loads. The deterioration of power quality in the distribution system causes various problems such as the overheating of equipments and malfunction of rotating machines. Since the power quality changes according to air temperature and date, it is desirable to measure the voltages and currents continuously for a long time. In this study, the authors focus attention on the distribution system in the University of Fukui campus, and the authors have measured the voltages and currents in the distribution system for a long period with WAMS (Wide Area Measurement System) using NCT (Network Computing Terminal). Based on the obtained data, the authors analyzed the power quality of the campus distribution system from viewpoints of voltage imbalance, current imbalance, voltage THD (Total Harmonic Distortion), and current THD. Furthermore, the improvement effect of power quality of the campus distribution system by exchange of single-phase load connection is described.

  10. A major advance in the quality of the training aimed at improving results; Un avance importante en la calidad de la formacion orientada a la mejora de resultados

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Delgado, J. L.; Gonzalez Anez, F.


    Tecnatom has made in the last years several initiatives focused on improving quality and standards of training services with respect to processes,methodology and instructor qualification. Main areas of actuation are described in this article. (Author)

  11. A framework for healthcare quality improvement in India: The time is here and now!

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P Varkey


    Full Text Available Healthcare in India has been undergoing rapid changes in the last decade. As demand outpaces supply, quality improvement (QI initiatives and tools can be beneficial to enhance safe, effective, efficient, equitable and timely care. Healthcare quality is the degree to which health services for individuals and populations increase the likelihood of desired health outcomes and are consistent with current professional knowledge. This article discusses the framework for QI and reviews the Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA, Lean and Six Sigma methodologies, and briefly discusses key patient safety and quality measurement concepts. The PDSA cycle assists in testing the ideas through small tests of change or "pilots". Six Sigma aims at reducing variations in processes, and the Lean methodology predominantly focuses on enhancing process efficiency and eliminating non-value added steps in the process. It is likely that such structured problem solving approaches will provide an objective and systematic method of enhancing quality in healthcare institutions across India. As increasing attention being is paid on enhancing the quality of life through the Quality Council of India and accreditation of hospitals in India through the International Organization for standardization and National Accreditation Board for hospitals and healthcare providers, a focus on QI by institutional leaders and healthcare providers is key to enhancing the safety and quality of healthcare in India. Central to this also will be leadership buy-in, identification of a core faculty or team that will be the initiators of change, a respect for the need for faculty training and education in QI, measurement of issues to identify key priorities to focus on, and enhanced information systems where resources permit the same.

  12. Ripening for improving the quality of inoculated cheese Rhizopus oryzae

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    Full Text Available Estikomah SA, Sutarno, Pangastuti A 2010. Ripening for improving the quality of inoculated cheese Rhizopus oryzae. Nusantara Bioscience 2: 1-6. Cheese is dairy product resulted from fermented milk in which the fermentation process can be done by lactic acid bacteria or fungus. Rhizopus oryzae is able to produce lactic acid, protease and lipase. The ripening process changes the taste and texture. The purpose of this study is ripening to improve the quality of inoculated cheese R. oryzae. In this research the ripening was conducted the concentration variation of temperature (5oC, 10oC, 15oC, and time (7 days, 14 days. The procedure of research consisted of two steps, namely un-ripened cheese preparation followed by ripening cheese preparation. Cheese produced in this study analyzed the value of pH, fat content, protein content, amino acid levels and identification of microbe with ANOVA then followed by DMRT at 5% level of significance. Data results were analyzed with the like’s nonparametric statistical test, followed by Fridman Wilcoxon Signed Rank Test (WSRT at 5% level significance. The results showed that the preferred ripened cheese panelist was at a temperature of 15oC for 14 days. Ripening conditions affect pH, fat content, protein content and do not affect the levels of amino acids that formed ripened cheese. The best quality ripened cheese i.e. at a temperature of 15°C for 14 days, had a pH value of 4.40, the highest protein content of 9.78%, and fat content of 35.02%. The results of identified microbe in un-ripened cheese and ripened cheese include Enterococcus hirae (Enterococcus faecalis, Bacillus subtilis, and Aspergillus sp.

  13. Do increases in energy efficiency improve environmental quality and sustainability?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hanley, Nick [Department of Economics, University of Stirling, Stirling, Scotland (United Kingdom); McGregor, Peter G.; Swales, J. Kim; Turner, Karen [Fraser of Allander Institute and Department of Economics, University of Strathclyde, Strathclyde (United Kingdom)


    Governments world-wide increasingly see energy efficiency as an important aspect of sustainability. However, there is a debate in the literature as to whether the impact of improved energy efficiency on reducing energy use might be partially, or more than wholly, offset through 'rebound' and 'backfire' effects. This paper clarifies the theoretical conditions under which such effects would occur and explores their likely significance using a computable general equilibrium (CGE) model of the Scottish economy. We find that for Scotland a general improvement in energy efficiency in the production sectors of the economy initially produces rebound effects that eventually grow into backfire. Energy use ultimately increases in response to an efficiency gain and the ratio of GDP to CO{sub 2} emissions falls. The economic factors underpinning rebound effects are straightforward: energy efficiency improvements result in an effective cut in energy prices, which produces output, substitution, competitiveness and income effects that stimulate energy demands. However, the presence of strong rebound or even backfire does not mean that efficiency-enhancing policies are irrelevant: rather it suggests that such policies operating alone are insufficient to generate environmental improvements. The implication is that a co-ordinated portfolio of energy policies is required. (author)

  14. Who Repeats Algebra, and How Does Initial Performance Relate to Improvement When the Course Is Repeated? (United States)

    Fong, Anthony; Jaquet, Karina; Finkelstein, Neal


    The information provided in this report shows how students perform when they repeat algebra I and how the level of improvement varies depending on initial course performance and the academic measure (course grades or CST scores). This information can help inform decisions and policies regarding whether and under what circumstances students should…

  15. Improving critical care discharge summaries: a collaborative quality improvement project using PDSA. (United States)

    Goulding, Lucy; Parke, Hannah; Maharaj, Ritesh; Loveridge, Robert; McLoone, Anne; Hadfield, Sophie; Helme, Eloise; Hopkins, Philip; Sandall, Jane


    Around 110,000 people spend time in critical care units in England and Wales each year. The transition of care from the intensive care unit to the general ward exposes patients to potential harms from changes in healthcare providers and environment. Nurses working on general wards report anxiety and uncertainty when receiving patients from critical care. An innovative form of enhanced capability critical care outreach called 'iMobile' is being provided at King's College Hospital (KCH). Part of the remit of iMobile is to review patients who have been transferred from critical care to general wards. The iMobile team wished to improve the quality of critical care discharge summaries. A collaborative evidence-based quality improvement project was therefore undertaken by the iMobile team at KCH in conjunction with researchers from King's Improvement Science (KIS). Plan, Do, Study, Act (PDSA) methodology was used. Three PDSA cycles were undertaken. Methods adopted comprised: a scoping literature review to identify relevant guidelines and research evidence to inform all aspects of the quality improvement project; a process mapping exercise; informal focus groups / interviews with staff; patient story-telling work with people who had experienced critical care and subsequent discharge to a general ward; and regular audits of the quality of both medical and nursing critical care discharge summaries. The following behaviour change interventions were adopted, taking into account evidence of effectiveness from published systematic reviews and considering the local context: regular audit and feedback of the quality of discharge summaries, feedback of patient experience, and championing and education delivered by local opinion leaders. The audit results were mixed across the trajectory of the project, demonstrating the difficulty of sustaining positive change. This was particularly important as critical care bed occupancy and through-put fluctuates which then impacts on work

  16. Analysis Approach to Durability Based on Material Initial Fatigue Quality and S-N Curve

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yang Moucun; Nie Hong


    Based on probabilistic fracture mechanics approach, a new concept of material initial fatigue quality (MIFQ) is developed. Then,the relation between S-N curve and crack propagation curve is studied. From the study, a new durability analysis method is presented. In this method, S-N curve is used to determine crack growth rate under constant amplitude.loading and evaluate the effects of different factors on durability and then the structural durability is analyzed. The tests and analyses indicate that this method has lower dependence on testing, and higher accuracy, reliability and generality and is convenient for application.

  17. Improving the Optical Quality Factor of the WGM Resonator (United States)

    Savchenkov, Anatoliy; Matsko, Andrey; Iltchenko, Vladimir


    Resonators usually are characterized with two partially dependent values: finesse (F) and quality factor (Q). The finesse of an empty Fabry-Perot (FP) resonator is defined solely by the quality of its mirrors and is calculated as F=piR(exp 1/2)/(1-R). The maximum up-to-date value of reflectivity R approximately equal to 1 - 1.6 x 10(exp -6) is achieved with dielectric mirrors. An FP resonator made with the mirrors has finesse F=1.9 x 10(exp 6). Further practical increase of the finesse of FP resonators is problematic because of the absorption and the scattering of light in the mirror material through fundamental limit on the reflection losses given by the internal material losses and by thermodynamic density fluctuations on the order of parts in 109. The quality factor of a resonator depends on both its finesse and its geometrical size. A one-dimensional FP resonator has Q=2 F L/lambda, where L is the distance between the mirrors and lambda is the wavelength. It is easy to see that the quality factor of the resonator is unlimited because L is unlimited. F and Q are equally important. In some cases, finesse is technically more valuable than the quality factor. For instance, buildup of the optical power inside the resonator, as well as the Purcell factor, is proportional to finesse. Sometimes, however, the quality factor is more valuable. For example, inverse threshold power of intracavity hyperparametric oscillation is proportional to Q(exp 2) and efficiency of parametric frequency mixing is proportional to Q(exp 3). Therefore, it is important to know both the maximally achievable finesse and quality factor values of a resonator. Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are capable of achieving larger finesse compared to FP resonators. For instance, fused silica resonators with finesse 2.3 x 10(exp 6) and 2.8 x 10(exp 6) have been demonstrated. Crystalline WGM resonators reveal even larger finesse values, F=6.3 x 10(exp 6), because of low attenuation of light in the

  18. Improving health promotion using quality improvement techniques in Australian Indigenous primary health care

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nikki ePercival


    Full Text Available While some areas of clinical health care are becoming adept at implementing continuous quality improvement (CQI projects, there has been limited experimentation of CQI in health promotion. In this study, we examined the impact of a CQI intervention on health promotion in four Australian Indigenous primary health care centres. Our study objectives were to: (a describe the scope and quality of health promotion activities; (b describe the status of health centre system support for health promotion activities; and (c introduce a CQI intervention and examine the impact on health promotion activities and health centres systems over two years. Baseline assessments showed sub-optimal health centre systems support for health promotion and significant evidence-practice gaps. After two annual CQI cycles, there were improvements in staff understanding of health promotion and systems for planning and documenting health promotion activities had been introduced. Actions to improve best practice health promotion, such as community engagement and intersectoral partnerships, were inhibited by the way health centre systems were organized, predominately to support clinical and curative services. These findings suggest that CQI can improve the delivery of evidence based health promotion by engaging front line health practitioners in decision making processes about the design/redesign of health centre systems to support the delivery of best practice health promotion. However, further and sustained improvements in health promotion will require broader engagement of management, senior staff and members of the local community to address organisational and policy level barriers.

  19. Improving quality of care in substance abuse treatment using five key process improvement principles. (United States)

    Hoffman, Kim A; Green, Carla A; Ford, James H; Wisdom, Jennifer P; Gustafson, David H; McCarty, Dennis


    Process and quality improvement techniques have been successfully applied in health care arenas, but efforts to institute these strategies in alcohol and drug treatment are underdeveloped. The Network for the Improvement of Addiction Treatment (NIATx) teaches participating substance abuse treatment agencies to use process improvement strategies to increase client access to, and retention in, treatment. NIATx recommends five principles to promote organizational change: (1) understand and involve the customer, (2) fix key problems, (3) pick a powerful change leader, (4) get ideas from outside the organization, and (5) use rapid cycle testing. Using case studies, supplemented with cross-agency analyses of interview data, this paper profiles participating NIATx treatment agencies that illustrate successful applications of each principle. Results suggest that organizations can successfully integrate and apply the five principles as they develop and test change strategies, improving access and retention in treatment, and agencies' financial status. Upcoming changes requiring increased provision of behavioral health care will result in greater demand for services. Treatment organizations, already struggling to meet demand and client needs, will need strategies that improve the quality of care they provide without significantly increasing costs. The five NIATx principles have potential for helping agencies achieve these goals.

  20. Relief of BPO or improvement in quality of life? (United States)

    Teillac, P


    Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) can cause benign prostatic enlargement with subsequent benign prostatic obstruction (BPO) and lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS). A reduction in the size of the prostate has long been considered one of the most important treatment goals. However, there is a poor correlation between prostate size and both LUTS and BPO, and between BPO and symptoms. Today, the urologist's primary objectives are to minimize symptoms, relieve BPO and decrease the morbidity associated with BPO. From the patient's point of view, rapid relief of LUTS and immediate improvement in associated quality of life (QOL) are the most important factors. Although there is a good correlation between relief of symptoms (as measured by the International Prostate Symptom Score [I-PSS], for example) and associated improvement in bothersomeness and QOL, particularly that associated with filling ('irritative') symptoms, it is still important to quantify LUTS-related bothersomeness and QOL. Various questionnaires have been developed to measure bothersomeness (e.g. Symptom Problem Index [SPI], Danish PSS [DAN-PSS], International Continence Society BPH Study Group [ICSmale] questionnaire) and QOL (e.g. I-PSS-QOL, BPH Impact Index [BII] and QOL9 BPH-specific questionnaire). In addition, the impact of treatment on sexual function should also be taken into account when judging the overall well being or QOL of the patient. A grading system to evaluate the global improvement in patients following treatment has been established. Patients are either graded as showing 'slight', 'moderate' or 'marked' improvement, with the reduction in I-PSS or BII scores required for each classification dependent on baseline symptom severity. Medical treatment strategies designed to alleviate the symptoms of BPH and consequently improve the patient's QOL are now becoming increasingly important.

  1. Improvement of the quality of wheat bread by addition of glycoside hydrolase family 10 xylanases. (United States)

    Zheng, Han; Guo, Bing; Chen, Xiu-Lan; Fan, Sou-Jin; Zhang, Yu-Zhong


    Although many xylanases are widely used in the baking industry, only one glycoside hydrolase family 10 (GH 10) xylanase has previously been reported to be effective in baking. In this study, we compared the effectiveness of two GH 10 xylanases, psychrophilic XynA from Glaciecola mesophila and mesophilic EX1 from Trichoderma pseudokoningii, in bread making. The optimal dosages needed to improve wheat flour dough and bread quality were 270-U/kg flour for EX1 and 0.9-U/kg flour for XynA. At their optimal dosage, both XynA and EX1 had significant dough-softening ability, resulting in a 50% reduction in Brabender units. XynA was more effective than EX1 in reducing the time to reach maximum consistency. XynA and EX1 showed similar effects in improving the bread volume (~30% increase). EX1 was more effective in reducing the initial crumb firmness. Although both enzymes exhibited similar anti-staling effects on the bread, based on a decrease in the bread firmness, XynA had a greater effect on reducing the firming rate, and EX1 showed an enhanced reduction in the initial firmness. These results show that these two GH 10 xylanases have unique advantages in improving dough and bread quality and indicate their potential in bread making.

  2. Improving Service Quality: Achieving High Performance in the Public and Private Sectors. (United States)

    Milakovich, Michael E.

    Quality-improvement principles are a sound means to respond to customer needs. However, when various quality and productivity theories and methods are applied, it is very difficult to consistently deliver quality results, especially in quasi-monopolistic, non-competitive, and regulated environments. This book focuses on quality-improvement methods…

  3. Organization Complexity and Primary Care Providers' Perceptions of Quality Improvement Culture Within the Veterans Health Administration. (United States)

    Korom-Djakovic, Danijela; Canamucio, Anne; Lempa, Michele; Yano, Elizabeth M; Long, Judith A


    This study examined how aspects of quality improvement (QI) culture changed during the introduction of the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) patient-centered medical home initiative and how they were influenced by existing organizational factors, including VHA facility complexity and practice location. A voluntary survey, measuring primary care providers' (PCPs') perspectives on QI culture at their primary care clinics, was administered in 2010 and 2012. Participants were 320 PCPs from hospital- and community-based primary care practices in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, and Ohio. PCPs in community-based outpatient clinics reported an improvement in established processes for QI, and communication and cooperation from 2010 to 2012. However, their peers in hospital-based clinics did not report any significant improvements in QI culture. In both years, compared with high-complexity facilities, medium- and low-complexity facilities had better scores on the scales assessing established processes for QI, and communication and cooperation.

  4. Checklists to improve the quality of the orthopaedic literature

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mundi Raman


    Full Text Available Several checklists have been developed in an effort to help journals and researchers improve the quality of reporting in research. The CONSORT statement and the CLEAR NPT evaluate randomized trials. The MOOSE and QUOROM checklists evaluate meta-analyses. The STROBE checklists assists readers in evaluating observational studies and the STARD checklist was developed for diagnostic test evaluation. The checklists presented here provide an invaluable source of guidance to authors, journal editors and readers who are seeking to prepare and evaluate reports. As evidence-based medicine continues to establish itself as the new paradigm by which medicine is practiced, the need for good reporting for all research designs must also become commonplace as opposed to the exception.

  5. Improvement of Tagliatelle Quality by Addition of Red Quinoa Flour

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anamaria Pop


    Full Text Available In order to diversification of tagliatelle pasta and increasing segment of consumers it was intended to improvement of tagliatelle pasta quality by addition of red quinoa flour. The products obtained at Bakery Pilot Station of University of Agricultural Sciences and Veterinary Medicine Cluj-Napoca was the result of original recipe. To optimize the recipe were made four experimental variants, white flour and red quinoa flour is used in different proportions: Variant 1 – plain tagliatelle pasta (control sample who used white flour WF in 100%, Variant 2 consisting of 15% red quinoa flour (15 QF, Variant 3 consisting of 30 % red quinoa flour (30 QF and Variant 4 consisting of 50 % red quinoa flour (50 RQF. The experimental variants was analyzed for physico-chemical: moisture content, protein content and acidity. The sensory attributes, were evaluated by using a 9-point Hedonic scale. Present study indicated that the variant 3 were most accepted by consumers.

  6. Implementation of biochemical screening to improve baking quality of barley

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vincze, Éva; Dionisio, Giuseppe; Aaslo, Per;


    Barley (Hordeum vulgare) has the potential to offer considerable human nutritional benefits, especially as supplement to wheat-based breads. Under current commercial baking conditions it is not possible to introduce more that 20% barley flour to the wheat bread without negative impact...... proteins. Changing the storage protein composition can lessen this problem. Our working hypothesis was that exploiting the substantial genetic variation within the gene pool for storage proteins could enable improving the baking qualities of barley flour. We characterised forty-nine barley cultivars...... for variations in storage protein and AA composition. These cultivars were selected based on their higher protein contents (11.8–17.6%). The results obtained indicated that substantial variation not only in the distribution of the hordein polypeptides but also in the relative proportions of the storage proteins...

  7. A variation reduction allocation model for quality improvement to minimize investment and quality costs by considering suppliers’ learning curve (United States)

    Rosyidi, C. N.; Jauhari, WA; Suhardi, B.; Hamada, K.


    Quality improvement must be performed in a company to maintain its product competitiveness in the market. The goal of such improvement is to increase the customer satisfaction and the profitability of the company. In current practice, a company needs several suppliers to provide the components in assembly process of a final product. Hence quality improvement of the final product must involve the suppliers. In this paper, an optimization model to allocate the variance reduction is developed. Variation reduction is an important term in quality improvement for both manufacturer and suppliers. To improve suppliers’ components quality, the manufacturer must invest an amount of their financial resources in learning process of the suppliers. The objective function of the model is to minimize the total cost consists of investment cost, and quality costs for both internal and external quality costs. The Learning curve will determine how the employee of the suppliers will respond to the learning processes in reducing the variance of the component.

  8. Ways of improving environmental quality while quadrupling output

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)


    This article reports on a symposium held in China which proposed strategic thinking on improving environmental quality in keeping with economic development. The gross industrial and agricultural output value in China is expected to quadruple by the year 2000. Although the water quality of the big rivers in China is still good, the medium and small streams in the cities have become polluted by industrial waste and domestic sewage. China devotes only 0.3% of her gross industrial and agricultural output value to environmental protection, while the Western countries allocate about 1% or even as much as 2-2.5% of their GNP for the environment. The conferees at the symposium agreed that environmental protection should work for economic development and for raising social and economic results. It is proposed that environmental protection should be carried out by enforcing discharge and drainage limits, and by encouraging enterprises to reduce the discharge of pollutants. In a survey of more than 100 enterprises engaged in papermaking, tanning, the manufacture of synthetic fatty acids, synthetic detergents and sugar, the departments of light industry found that 70-90% of the discharged pollutants are resources which can still be used. The question of focusing on planned environmental management is examined. Includes a table.

  9. Improving regional variation using quality of care measures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Scott A Berkowitz


    Full Text Available Scott A Berkowitz1, Gary Gerstenblith1, Robert Herbert2, Gerard Anderson1,21Department of Medicine, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA; 2Center for Hospital Finance and Management, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD, USAAbstract: There is significant regional variability in the quality of care provided in the United States. This article compares regional performance for three measures that focus on transitions in care, and the care of patients with multiple conditions. Admissions for people with ambulatory care-sensitive conditions, hospital readmissions within 30 days of discharge, and compliance with practice guidelines for people with three chronic conditions (congestive heart failure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and diabetes were analyzed using data drawn from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ Standard Analytic Files for 5% of a 2004 national sample of Medicare beneficiaries which was divided by hospital referral regions and regional performance. There were significant regional differences in performance which we hypothesize could be improved through better care coordination and system management.Keywords: performance, quality, chronic condition, ambulatory care, sensitive conditions, readmissions

  10. Improving Software Quality Prediction by Noise Filtering Techniques

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Taghi M. Khoshgoftaar; Pierre Rebours


    Accuracy of machine learners is affected by quality of the data the learners are induced on. In this paper,quality of the training dataset is improved by removing instances detected as noisy by the Partitioning Filter. The fit datasetis first split into subsets, and different base learners are induced on each of these splits. The predictions are combined insuch a way that an instance is identified as noisy if it is misclassified by a certain number of base learners. Two versionsof the Partitioning Filter are used: Multiple-Partitioning Filter and Iterative-Partitioning Filter. The number of instancesremoved by the filters is tuned by the voting scheme of the filter and the number of iterations. The primary aim of thisstudy is to compare the predictive performances of the final models built on the filtered and the un-filtered training datasets.A case study of software measurement data of a high assurance software project is performed. It is shown that predictiveperformances of models built on the filtered fit datasets and evaluated on a noisy test dataset are generally better than thosebuilt on the noisy (un-filtered) fit dataset. However, predictive performance based on certain aggressive filters is affected bypresence of noise in the evaluation dataset.

  11. The Software Improvement Process - Tools And Rules To Encourage Quality

    CERN Document Server

    Sigerud, K


    The Applications section of the CERN accelerator Controls group has decided to apply a systematic approach to quality assurance (QA), the “Software Improvement Process”, SIP. This process focuses on three areas: the development process itself, suitable QA tools, and how to practically encourage developers to do QA. For each stage of the development process we have agreed on the recommended activities and deliverables, and identified tools to automate and support the task. For example we do more code reviews. As peer reviews are resource-intensive, we only do them for complex parts of a product. As a complement, we are using static code checking tools, like FindBugs and Checkstyle. We also encourage unit testing and have agreed on a minimum level of test coverage recommended for all products, measured using Clover. Each of these tools is well integrated with our IDE (Eclipse) and give instant feedback to the developer about the quality of their code. The major challenges of SIP have been to 1) agree on com...

  12. Forensic mental health assessment in France: recommendations for quality improvement. (United States)

    Combalbert, Nicolas; Andronikof, Anne; Armand, Marine; Robin, Cécile; Bazex, Hélène


    The quality of forensic mental health assessment has been a growing concern in various countries on both sides of the Atlantic, but the legal systems are not always comparable and some aspects of forensic assessment are specific to a given country. This paper describes the legal context of forensic psychological assessment in France (i.e. pre-trial investigation phase entrusted to a judge, with mental health assessment performed by preselected professionals called "experts" in French), its advantages and its pitfalls. Forensic psychiatric or psychological assessment is often an essential and decisive element in criminal cases, but since a judiciary scandal which was made public in 2005 (the Outreau case) there has been increasing criticism from the public and the legal profession regarding the reliability of clinical conclusions. Several academic studies and a parliamentary report have highlighted various faulty aspects in both the judiciary process and the mental health assessments. The heterogeneity of expert practices in France appears to be mainly related to a lack of consensus on several core notions such as mental health diagnosis or assessment methods, poor working conditions, lack of specialized training, and insufficient familiarity with the Code of Ethics. In this article we describe and analyze the French practice of forensic psychologists and psychiatrists in criminal cases and propose steps that could be taken to improve its quality, such as setting up specialized training courses, enforcing the Code of Ethics for psychologists, and calling for consensus on diagnostic and assessment methods.

  13. Best Practices for Chemotherapy Administration in Pediatric Oncology: Quality and Safety Process Improvements (2015). (United States)

    Looper, Karen; Winchester, Kari; Robinson, Deborah; Price, Andrea; Langley, Rachel; Martin, Gina; Jones, Sally; Holloway, Jodi; Rosenberg, Susanne; Flake, Susan


    The administration of chemotherapy to children with cancer is a high-risk process that must be performed in a safe and consistent manner with high reliability. Clinical trials play a major role in the treatment of children with cancer; conformance to chemotherapy protocol requirements and accurate documentation in the medical record are critical. Inconsistencies in the administration and documentation of chemotherapy were identified as opportunities for errors to occur. A major process improvement was initiated to establish best practices for nurses who administer chemotherapy to children. An interdisciplinary team was formed to evaluate the current process and to develop best practices based on current evidence, protocol requirements, available resources, and safety requirements. The process improvement focused on the establishment of standardized and safe administration techniques, exact administration times, and consistent electronic documentation that could easily be retrieved in medical record audits. Quality improvement tools including SBAR (Situation, Background, Assessment, Recommendation), process mapping, PDSA (Plan, Do. Study, Act) cycles, and quality metrics were used with this process improvement. The team established best practices in chemotherapy administration to children that have proven to be safe and reliable. Follow-up data have demonstrated that the project was highly successful and improved accuracy, patient and nurse safety, and effectiveness of chemotherapy administration.

  14. Improvement of Groundwater Quality Using Constructed Wetland for Agricultural Irrigation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pantip Klomjek


    Full Text Available This research was designed to evaluate the performance of Constructed Wetlands (CW for groundwater quality improvement. In the first phase of this study, performance of CW planted with cattails for Manganese (Mn and Iron (Fe reduction was evaluated at 12, 24 and 48 hours of Hydraulic Retention Time (HRT. Average efficiencies of all tested CW systems were higher than 90 and 75% for Mn and Fe concentration reduction. Subsequently, the efficiency of CW operated at 12 hours of HRT was investigated at different plant harvest intervals. In the second phase of study, Mn and Fe removal efficiencies were 75-100 and 48-99%, respectively. Both Mn and Fe removal efficiencies for the CW system were not different between 4, 6 and 8 weeks of harvest intervals. However, the efficiency obviously increased after the first plant harvest. Average Mn and Fe removal rates of the CWs operated at the tested harvest intervals were 0.068 to 0.092 and 0.383 to 0.432 g/m2/d, respectively. Fe removal rate was not significantly different under the various test conditions. However the highest Mn removal rate was obtained in CWs operated with a harvest interval of 4 weeks. Mn accumulation rates in cattail shoots and roots were 0.04-8.25 and 0.83-23.14 mg/m2/d, respectively. Fe accumulation rates in those were 0.04-164.27 and 249.62-1,701.54 mg/m2/d, respectively. Obviously, cattail underground tissues accumulated both Mn and Fe at higher concentrations than those of the above ground tissue. These results show that CW can improve the quality of groundwater before agricultural irrigation.

  15. A review of how the quality of HIV clinical services has been evaluated or improved. (United States)

    Hung, Anna; Pradel, Françoise


    To examine approaches being used to evaluate and improve quality of HIV clinical services we searched the MEDLINE, Cochrane Library collection, EMBASE, Global Health, and Web of Science databases for articles and abstracts focused on evaluating or improving quality of HIV clinical services. We extracted country income level, targeted clinical services, and quality evaluation approaches, data sources, and criteria. Fifty journal articles and 46 meeting abstracts were included. Of the 96 studies reviewed, 65% were programme evaluations, 71% focused on low- and middle-income countries, and 65% focused on antiretroviral therapy services. With regard to quality, 45% used a quality improvement model or programme, 13% set a quality threshold, and 51% examined patient records to evaluate quality. No studies provided a definition for quality HIV care. Quality assurance and improvement of HIV clinical services is increasingly important. This review highlights gaps in knowledge for future research, and may also help countries and programmes develop their HIV care quality improvement frameworks.

  16. 77 FR 43822 - Proposed Information Collection Request; Comment Request; Valuing Improved Water Quality in the... (United States)


    ... AGENCY Proposed Information Collection Request; Comment Request; Valuing Improved Water Quality in the... request (ICR), ``Valuing Improved Water Quality in the Chesapeake Bay Using Stated Preference Methods (New... Act (CWA) directs EPA to coordinate Federal and State efforts to improve water quality in...

  17. Diabatic initialization for improvement in the tropical analysis of divergence and moisture using satellite radiometric imagery data (United States)

    Kasahara, Akira; Mizzi, Arthur P.; Donner, Leo J.


    To improve the quality of horizontal divergence and moisture analyses in the tropics, a diabatic initialization scheme is developed to incorporate information on convective activity and the proxy data of precipitation obtained from satellite radiometric imagery data. The tropical precipitation rates are estimated by developing a relationship between the pentad precipitation data of the Global Precipitation Climatology Project with daily outgoing longwave radiation data. The tropical belt from 35°S to 25°N (for January 1988) is divided into 3 parts: convective, convective fringe, and downward-motion (clear-air) areas. In the convective region, the algorithm adjusts the horizontal divergence and humidity fields such that a version of the Kuo cumulus parameterization will yield the precipitation rates closest to the proxy data. The temperature in the planetary boundary layer is also adjusted, if necessary, to ensure the initiation of cumulus convection. In the downward-motion region, the divergence field is adjusted to yield descending motion expected from the thermodynamic balance between radiative cooling and adiabatic warming. In the convective fringe region, where convective criteria are not met, the divergence field is adjusted only to satisfy the global conservation of divergence. The humidity field is left intact in both the downward-motion and convective fringe regions. This adjustment scheme will ameliorate problems associated with spinup of precipitation in a numerical prediction model with the same cumulus parameterization as used in the initialization. This initialization scheme may be used as a method of quality control for first-guess fields in four-dimensional data assimilation by means of satellite radiometric imagery data.

  18. A quality improvement project to improve the rate of early breast milk expression in mothers of preterm infants. (United States)

    Murphy, Lindsey; Warner, Diane D; Parks, Jessica; Whitt, Jenny; Peter-Wohl, Sigal


    Providing breast milk is challenging for non-nursing mothers of premature infants. Early breast milk expression results in successful and longer lactation in mothers of very low birth weight (VLBW) infants. This quality improvement initiative sought to increase the rate of early milk expression in mothers of VLBW infants and increase the proportion of infants receiving maternal breast milk (MBM) at 28 days of age and at discharge. Phase 1 (n = 45) occurred between April 1, 2012, and August 31, 2012. Phase 2 (n = 58) occurred between September 1, 2012, and February 28, 2013. Pre-phase 2 actions included increased lactation consultant workforce, early lactation consultation, tracking of MBM supply, and physician education. Inborn infants MBM at 28 days and at discharge was 64% and 74%, respectively (P = .40), and the proportion of infants receiving exclusive MBM at discharge increased from 37% to 59% (P = .046). In conclusion, a multidisciplinary initiative aimed at improving the rate of early milk expression was associated with more VLBW infants receiving exclusive MBM at discharge.

  19. [Continuous nursing education to improve the quality of health care]. (United States)

    Fumić, Nera; Marinović, Marin; Brajan, Dolores


    Health care and today's medical and technical achievements and approved standards of treatment provide comprehensive quality, safety and traceability of medical procedures respecting the principles of health protection. Continuous education improves the quality of nursing health care and increases the effectiveness of patient care, consequently maintaining and enhancing patient safety. Patient health problems impose the need of appropriate, planned and timely nursing care and treatment. In providing quality nursing care, attention is focused on the patient and his/her needs in order to maintain and increase their safety, satisfaction, independence and recovery or peaceful death, so the health and nursing practices must be systematized, planned and based on knowledge and experience. Health and nursing care of patients at risk of developing acute and chronic wounds or already suffering from some form of this imply preventive measures that are provided through patient education, motivation, monitoring, early recognition of risk factors and causes, and reducing or removing them through the prescribed necessary medical treatment which is safe depending on the patient health status. Except for preventive measures, nursing care of patients who already suffer from some form of acute or chronic wounds is focused on the care and treatment of damaged tissue by providing appropriate and timely diagnosis, timely and proper evaluation of the wound and patient general status, knowledge and understanding of the wide range of local, oral and parenteral therapy and treatment, aiming to increase patient safety by preventing progression of the patient general condition and local wound status and reducing the possibility of developing infection or other complications of the underlying disease. In the overall patient management, through nursing process, medical interventions are implemented and aimed to maintain and optimize health status, prevent complications of existing diseases and

  20. Initial Investigation of Reaction Control System Design on Spacecraft Handling Qualities for Earth Orbit Docking (United States)

    Bailey, Randall E.; Jackson, E. Bruce; Goodrich, Kenneth H.; Ragsdale, W. Al; Neuhaus, Jason; Barnes, Jim


    A program of research, development, test, and evaluation is planned for the development of Spacecraft Handling Qualities guidelines. In this first experiment, the effects of Reaction Control System design characteristics and rotational control laws were evaluated during simulated proximity operations and docking. Also, the influence of piloting demands resulting from varying closure rates was assessed. The pilot-in-the-loop simulation results showed that significantly different spacecraft handling qualities result from the design of the Reaction Control System. In particular, cross-coupling between translational and rotational motions significantly affected handling qualities as reflected by Cooper-Harper pilot ratings and pilot workload, as reflected by Task-Load Index ratings. This influence is masked but only slightly by the rotational control system mode. While rotational control augmentation using Rate Command Attitude Hold can reduce the workload (principally, physical workload) created by cross-coupling, the handling qualities are not significantly improved. The attitude and rate deadbands of the RCAH introduced significant mental workload and control compensation to evaluate when deadband firings would occur, assess their impact on docking performance, and apply control inputs to mitigate that impact.

  1. Readiness to adopt a performance measurement system for substance abuse treatment: Findings from the Service Quality Measures initiative

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B Myers


    Full Text Available Background. A performance measurement system – the Service Quality Measures (SQM initiative – has been developed to monitor the quality of South Africa (SA’s substance abuse treatment services. Identifying factors associated with readiness to adopt this system may inform strategies to facilitate its robust implementation. Objective. To examine factors associated with readiness to adopt a performance measurement system among SA substance abuse treatment providers. Methods. We surveyed 81 treatment providers from 13 treatment sites in the Western Cape, SA. The survey examined awareness, resources, organisational climate, leadership support and readiness to adopt the SQM system. Regression analysis was used to identify factors associated with readiness to adopt this system. Results. Readiness to adopt the SQM initiative was high (M=5.64, standard deviation 1.63. In bivariate analyses, caseload size (F=3.73 (degrees of freedom (df=3.70, p=0.015, awareness (r=0.78, p<0.0001, leadership support (r=0.70, p<0.0001, resources (r=0.65, p<0.0001, openness to change (r=0.372, p=0.001, and external pressure to change were associated with readiness to adopt the SQM. In multivariate analyses, only awareness of the SQM initiative (B=0.34, standard error (SE 0.08, t=4.4, p<0.0001 and leadership support (B=0.45, SE 0.11, t=4.0, p<0.0001 were significantly associated with readiness to adopt this system. Conclusion. While treatment providers report high levels of readiness to adopt the SQM system, findings show that the likelihood of adoption can be further increased through improved provider awareness and enhanced leadership support for this health innovation.

  2. Documentation of quality improvement exposure by internal medicine residency applicants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Victor O. Kolade


    Full Text Available Background: Quality improvement (QI has become an essential component of medical care in the United States. In residency programs, QI is a focus area of the Clinical Learning Environment Review visits conducted by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education. The readiness of applicants to internal medicine residency to engage in QI on day one is unknown. Purpose: To document the reporting of QI training or experience in residency applications. Methods: Electronic Residency Application Service applications to a single internal medicine program were reviewed individually looking for reported QI involvement or actual projects in the curriculum vitae (CVs, personal statements (PSs, and letters of recommendation (LORs. CVs were also reviewed for evidence of education in QI such as completion of Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI modules. Results: Of 204 candidates shortlisted for interview, seven had QI items on their CVs, including one basic IHI certificate. Three discussed their QI work in their PSs, and four had recommendation letters describing their involvement in QI. One applicant had both CV and LOR evidence, so that 13 (6% documented QI engagement. Conclusion: Practice of or instruction in QI is rarely mentioned in application documents of prospective internal medicine interns.

  3. Could houseplants improve indoor air quality in schools? (United States)

    Pegas, P N; Alves, C A; Nunes, T; Bate-Epey, E F; Evtyugina, M; Pio, C A


    Previous studies performed by the National Aeronautics Space Administration (NASA) indicated that plants and associated soil microorganisms may be used to reduce indoor pollutant levels. This study investigated the ability of plants to improve indoor air quality in schools. A 9-wk intensive monitoring campaign of indoor and outdoor air pollution was carried out in 2011 in a primary school of Aveiro, Portugal. Measurements included temperature, carbon dioxide (CO₂), carbon monoxide (CO), concentrations of volatile organic compounds (VOC), carbonyls, and particulate matter (PM₁₀) without and with plants in a classroom. PM₁₀ samples were analyzed for the water-soluble inorganic ions, as well for carbonaceous fractions. After 6 potted plants were hung from the ceiling, the mean CO₂ concentration decreased from 2004 to 1121 ppm. The total VOC average concentrations in the indoor air during periods of occupancy without and with the presence of potted plants were, respectively, 933 and 249 μg/m³. The daily PM₁₀ levels in the classroom during the occupancy periods were always higher than those outdoors. The presence of potted plants likely favored a decrease of approximately 30% in PM₁₀ concentrations. Our findings corroborate the results of NASA studies suggesting that plants might improve indoor air and make interior breathing spaces healthier.

  4. Marinade with alkaline solutions for the improvement of pork quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Viviane Maria Oliveira dos Santos


    Full Text Available The objective of this work was to evaluate the effects of alkaline solution marinades on the characteristics of pork subjected to post-mortem pH decrease in pig muscle. The pH of carcasses was measured in a commercial slaughterhouse (n = 526, 45 min after slaughtering (pH45 and, then, the carcasses were divided into the groups with pH455.7. Ten samples of the longissimus dorsi muscles of each group were collected and distributed in an entirely randomized design, in a 2x4 factorial arrangement, with two conditions (pH455.7, and four marinade solutions: TC, no marinade; TM1, sodium bicarbonate and sodium chloride; TM2, sodium tripolyphosphate and sodium chloride; TM3, sodium bicarbonate, sodium tripolyphosphate and sodium chloride. There was no interaction between pH45 of the meat and the marinade treatments. Meat with pH45<5.7 showed higher values for lightness, and for purge loss (PL, exudate loss (EL, cooking loss (CL and shear force (SF. Marinating increased the pH, reduced the lightness, EL, CL and SF, and improved tenderness, juiciness and flavor of meat. Marinades with solutions containing chloride, bicarbonate, and sodium tripolyphosphate are effective in the improvement of pork quality, making physical characteristics of marinated meat similar to those of fresh pork, as a consequence of accelerated postmortem glycolysis.

  5. Improving Industrial Energy Quality by an Active Current Filter

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Reyes–Trujillo E


    Full Text Available The growing number of non-linear loads on industrial applications has produced an important impact on the quality of electric power supply due to the increasing of the voltage and current harmonic distortion, and low power factor. In order to solve this, arrangements of capacitors and reactors, known as passive filters have been used. However these filters may produce resonance problems with network impedance, over compensation of reactive power at fundamental frequency, and poor flexibility for dynamic compensation of different frequency harmonic components. As a solution to the problems mentioned above, the active filters have been developed, whose features can be adapted in a dynamic and adjustable way on the requirements of the system to compensate. This paper presents the modelling and simulation results of an active current filter, used to reduce the harmonic distortion and to improve the power factor in an electric industrial system. A six-pulse diode converter has been used as non-linear passive load. During the analysis, it was observed that the total current harmonic distortion (THD was reduced from 16.47% to 0.46%, and the power factor in the distribution bus has improved from 0.5 to 0.95.The waveforms of a three-phase thyristor converter with a DC machine as active non-linear load are shown.

  6. AISI/DOE Technology Roadmap Program: Improved Surface Quality of Exposed Automotive Sheet Steels

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    John G. Speer; David K. Matlock; Noel Meyers; Young-Min Choi


    Surface quality of sheet steels is an important economic and technical issue for applications such as critical automotive surfaces. This project was therefore initiated to develop a more quantitative methodology for measuring surface imperfections, and to assess their response to forming and painting, particularly with respect to their visibility or invisibility after painting. The objectives were met, and included evaluation of a variety of imperfections present on commercial sheet surfaces or simulated using methods developed in the laboratory. The results are expected to have significant implications with respect to the methodology for assessing surface imperfections, development of quantitative criteria for surface inspection, and understanding and improving key painting process characteristics that influence the perceived quality of sheet steel surfaces.

  7. Continuous quality improvement: a shared governance model that maximizes agent-specific knowledge. (United States)

    Burkoski, Vanessa; Yoon, Jennifer


    Motivate, Innovate, Celebrate: an innovative shared governance model through the establishment of continuous quality improvement (CQI) councils was implemented across the London Health Sciences Centre (LHSC). The model leverages agent-specific knowledge at the point of care and provides a structure aimed at building human resources capacity and sustaining enhancements to quality and safe care delivery. Interprofessional and cross-functional teams work through the CQI councils to identify, formulate, execute and evaluate CQI initiatives. In addition to a structure that facilitates collaboration, accountability and ownership, a corporate CQI Steering Committee provides the forum for scaling up and spreading this model. Point-of-care staff, clinical management and educators were trained in LEAN methodology and patient experience-based design to ensure sufficient knowledge and resources to support the implementation.

  8. Initial position estimation method for permanent magnet synchronous motor based on improved pulse voltage injection

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wang, Z.; Lu, K.; Ye, Y.


    According to saliency of permanent magnet synchronous motor (PMSM), the information of rotor position is implied in performance of stator inductances due to the magnetic saturation effect. Researches focused on the initial rotor position estimation of PMSM by injecting modulated pulse voltage...... vectors. The relationship between the inductance variations and voltage vector positions was studied. The inductance variation effect on estimation accuracy was studied as well. An improved five-pulses injection method was proposed, to improve the estimation accuracy by choosing optimaized voltage vectors...

  9. Improving research on teacher quality in science and mathematics: Report of a symposium of scientists, educators, and researchers (United States)

    Blank, Rolf K.

    Many initiatives designed to improve the quality of elementary and secondary teachers have been proposed and implemented at national, state, and local levels. It is unclear whether these initiatives are based on a common definition of teacher quality or adequate knowledge about the conditions that produce quality teaching. This article summarizes the results of a symposium of the National Research Council on the state of research knowledge on teacher quality. Topics for needed research that were identified in the symposium included studies on the effects of state and local policies which set new standards for teachers, studies on the subject-matter knowledge and preparation of teachers, analyses of alternative methods of developing teaching skills, and assessments of the effects of school conditions for teaching on career patterns of teachers.




    Transportation Network Design Problem (TNDP) aims to select the best project sets among a number of new projects. Recently, metaheuristic methods are applied to solve TNDP in the sense of finding better solutions sooner. PSO as a metaheuristic method is based on stochastic optimization and is a parallel revolutionary computation technique. The PSO system initializes with a number of random solutions and seeks for optimal solution by improving generations. This paper studies the be...

  11. The national improvement partnership network: state-based partnerships that improve primary care quality. (United States)

    Shaw, Judith S; Norlin, Chuck; Gillespie, R J; Weissman, Mark; McGrath, Jane


    Improvement partnerships (IPs) are a model for collaboration among public and private organizations that share interests in improving child health and the quality of health care delivered to children. Their partners typically include state public health and Medicaid agencies, the local chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, and an academic health care organization or children's hospital. Most IPs also engage other partners, including a variety of public, private, and professional organizations and individuals. IPs lead and support measurement-based, systems-focused quality improvement (QI) efforts that primarily target primary care practices that care for children. Their projects are most often conducted as learning collaboratives that involve a team from each of 8 to 15 participating practices over 9 to 12 months. The improvement teams typically include a clinician, office manager, clinical staff (nurses or medical assistants), and, for some projects, a parent; the IPs provide the staff and local infrastructure. The projects target clinical topics, chosen because of their importance to public health, local clinicians, and funding agencies, including asthma, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, autism, developmental screening, obesity, mental health, medical home implementation, and several others. Over the past 13 years, 19 states have developed (and 5 are exploring developing) IPs. These organizations share similar aims and methods but differ substantially in leadership, structure, funding, and longevity. Their projects generally engage pediatric and family medicine practices ranging from solo private practices to community health centers to large corporate practices. The practices learn about the project topic and about QI, develop specific improvement strategies and aims that align with the project aims, perform iterative measures to evaluate and guide their improvements, and implement systems and processes to support and sustain those improvements

  12. Pakistan's Primary Education Quality Improvement Program: Local Partners Work with Rural Communities to Support High Quality Education for Girls (United States)

    Afridi, Zahid A.


    This document describes the contributions made by the Primary Education Quality Improvement Program (1996-1999) to the broad goals of improved access, equity, and quality in girls' primary education in Pakistan. In Balochistan, the largest but least developed province of Pakistan, an innovative approach to educational development was successfully…

  13. Initiatives to improve feedback culture in the final year of a veterinary program. (United States)

    Warman, Sheena M; Laws, Emma J; Crowther, Emma; Baillie, Sarah


    Despite the recognized importance of feedback in education, student satisfaction with the feedback process in medical and veterinary programs is often disappointing. We undertook various initiatives to try to improve the feedback culture in the final clinical year of the veterinary program at the University of Bristol, focusing on formative verbal feedback. The initiatives included E-mailed guidelines to staff and students, a faculty development workshop, and a reflective portfolio task for students. Following these initiatives, staff and students were surveyed regarding their perceptions of formative feedback in clinical rotations, and focus groups were held to further explore issues. The amount of feedback appeared to have increased, along with improved recognition of feedback by students and increased staff confidence and competence in the process. Other themes that emerged included inconsistencies in feedback among staff and between rotations; difficulties with giving verbal feedback to students, particularly when it relates to professionalism; the consequences of feedback for both staff and students; changes and challenges in students' feedback-seeking behavior; and the difficulties in providing accurate, personal end-of-rotation assessments. This project has helped improve the feedback culture within our clinics; the importance of sustaining and further developing the feedback culture is discussed in this article.

  14. Ensuring and Improving Information Quality for Earth Science Data and Products Role of the ESIP Information Quality Cluster (United States)

    Ramapriyan, H. K. (Rama); Peng, Ge; Moroni, David; Shie, Chung-Lin


    Quality of products is always of concern to users regardless of the type of products. The focus of this paper is on the quality of Earth science data products. There are four different aspects of quality scientific, product, stewardship and service. All these aspects taken together constitute Information Quality. With increasing requirement on ensuring and improving information quality, there has been considerable work related to information quality during the last several years. Given this rich background of prior work, the Information Quality Cluster (IQC), established within the Federation of Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP) has been active with membership from multiple organizations. Its objectives and activities, aimed at ensuring and improving information quality for Earth science data and products, are discussed briefly.

  15. Ensuring and Improving Information Quality for Earth Science Data and Products: Role of the ESIP Information Quality Cluster (United States)

    Ramapriyan, Hampapuram; Peng, Ge; Moroni, David; Shie, Chung-Lin


    Quality of products is always of concern to users regardless of the type of products. The focus of this paper is on the quality of Earth science data products. There are four different aspects of quality - scientific, product, stewardship and service. All these aspects taken together constitute Information Quality. With increasing requirement on ensuring and improving information quality, there has been considerable work related to information quality during the last several years. Given this rich background of prior work, the Information Quality Cluster (IQC), established within the Federation of Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP) has been active with membership from multiple organizations. Its objectives and activities, aimed at ensuring and improving information quality for Earth science data and products, are discussed briefly.

  16. Investigating organizational quality improvement systems, patient empowerment, organizational culture, professional involvement and the quality of care in European hospitals: the 'Deepening our Understanding of Quality Improvement in Europe (DUQuE)' project

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Groene, O.; Klazinga, N.; Wagner, C.; Arah, O.A.; Thompson, A.; Bruneau, C.; Suñol, R.


    Hospitals in European countries apply a wide range of quality improvement strategies. Knowledge of the effectiveness of these strategies, implemented as part of an overall hospital quality improvement system, is limited. We propose to study the relationships among organisational quality improvement

  17. Improving patient care through student leadership in team quality improvement projects. (United States)

    Tschannen, Dana; Aebersold, Michelle; Kocan, Mary Jo; Lundy, Francene; Potempa, Kathleen


    In partnership with a major medical center, senior-level nursing students completed a root cause analysis and implementation plan to address a unit-specific quality issue. To evaluate the project, unit leaders were asked their perceptions of the value of the projects and impact on patient care, as well as to provide exemplars depicting how the student root cause analysis work resulted in improved patient outcome and/or unit processes. Liaisons noted benefits of having an RCA team, with positive impact on patient outcomes and care processes.

  18. Approved Instructional Resources Series: A National Initiative to Identify Quality Emergency Medicine Blog and Podcast Content for Resident Education. (United States)

    Lin, Michelle; Joshi, Nikita; Grock, Andrew; Swaminathan, Anand; Morley, Eric J; Branzetti, Jeremy; Taira, Taku; Ankel, Felix; Yarris, Lalena M


    Background Emergency medicine (EM) residency programs can provide up to 20% of their planned didactic experiences asynchronously through the Individualized Interactive Instruction (III) initiative. Although blogs and podcasts provide potential material for III content, programs often struggle with identifying quality online content. Objective To develop and implement a process to curate quality EM content on blogs and podcasts for resident education and III credit. Methods We developed the Approved Instructional Resources (AIR) Series on the Academic Life in Emergency Medicine website. Monthly, an editorial board identifies, peer reviews, and writes assessment questions for high-quality blog/podcast content. Eight educators rate each post using a standardized scoring instrument. Posts scoring ≥ 30 of 35 points are awarded an AIR badge and featured in the series. Enrolled residents can complete an assessment quiz for III credit. After 12 months of implementation, we report on program feasibility, enrollment rate, web analytics, and resident satisfaction scores. Results As of June 2015, 65 EM residency programs are enrolled in the AIR Series, and 2140 AIR quizzes have been completed. A total of 96% (2064 of 2140) of participants agree or strongly agree that the activity would improve their clinical competency, 98% (2098 of 2140) plan to use the AIR Series for III credit, and 97% (2077 of 2140) plan to use it again in the future. Conclusions The AIR Series is a national asynchronous EM curriculum featuring quality blogs and podcasts. It uses a national expert panel and novel scoring instrument to peer review web-based educational resources.

  19. Identifying quality improvement intervention publications - A comparison of electronic search strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rubenstein Lisa V


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The evidence base for quality improvement (QI interventions is expanding rapidly. The diversity of the initiatives and the inconsistency in labeling these as QI interventions makes it challenging for researchers, policymakers, and QI practitioners to access the literature systematically and to identify relevant publications. Methods We evaluated search strategies developed for MEDLINE (Ovid and PubMed based on free text words, Medical subject headings (MeSH, QI intervention components, continuous quality improvement (CQI methods, and combinations of the strategies. Three sets of pertinent QI intervention publications were used for validation. Two independent expert reviewers screened publications for relevance. We compared the yield, recall rate, and precision of the search strategies for the identification of QI publications and for a subset of empirical studies on effects of QI interventions. Results The search yields ranged from 2,221 to 216,167 publications. Mean recall rates for reference publications ranged from 5% to 53% for strategies with yields of 50,000 publications or fewer. The 'best case' strategy, a simple text word search with high face validity ('quality' AND 'improv*' AND 'intervention*' identified 44%, 24%, and 62% of influential intervention articles selected by Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ experts, a set of exemplar articles provided by members of the Standards for Quality Improvement Reporting Excellence (SQUIRE group, and a sample from the Cochrane Effective Practice and Organization of Care Group (EPOC register of studies, respectively. We applied the search strategy to a PubMed search for articles published in 10 pertinent journals in a three-year period which retrieved 183 publications. Among these, 67% were deemed relevant to QI by at least one of two independent raters. Forty percent were classified as empirical studies reporting on a QI intervention. Conclusions The presented


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)



    Full Text Available Quality has been one of the most important factors in judging any product. Quality means “a degree or grade of excellence or worth”. Quality is a term that is usually described using adjectives. Quality has several attributes to it, some of which can be quantified using metrics. These attributes such as usability, portability, security, performance, reliability etc have different importance in different projects. Different software quality assurance methods & practices have been used in different software projects to attain the true value. Quality is an attribute which is a distinct feature and it differs with people’s perception. Achieving high software quality involves measurement of software metrics and optimization based on estimated values. As the software systems grow larger, complexity ofdesign and implementation increases, and this in turn is more prone to defects and hence directly affect the quality of the systems. However, in any software project, high quality is always desirable, and many projects have specific quality requirements. Achieving high software quality involves measurement of software metrics and optimization based on estimated values. Developing high quality software is governed by factors such as people, process, technology and cost. This paper attempts to present a novel approach towards achieving high software quality in various kinds of projects under given constraints.

  1. Pigs on the plains: Institutional analysis of a Colorado water quality initiative (United States)

    King, D.; Burkardt, N.; Lee, Lamb B.


    We used the Legal-Institutional Analysis Model (LIAM) and Advocacy Coalition Framework (ACF) to analyze the campaign over passage of the Colorado Hogs Rule, an initiative passed by the voters in 1998 to require regulation of swine production facilities in Colorado. Used in tandem, LIAM and ACF provided an opportunity to develop a robust understanding of the obstacles and opportunities that face water quality managers in a state-centered multi-organizational decision process. We found that combining the LIAM with the ACF enhanced the understanding that could be achieved by using either model in isolation. The predictive capacity of the LIAM would have been reduced without information from the ACF, and the ACF by itself would have missed the importance of a single-case study.

  2. A Case Study: Award Fees to Improve Quality. (United States)


    of the quality assurance department. (6) Proper manning including knowledge, experience, and employee motivation . (7) Trend analysis and...Discipline. 6. Cost of Quality (scrap, rework, repair). 7. Management Involvement. 8. Employee Motivation . 9. Corrective Action. 79 SELECTED

  3. Linking quality improvement and energy efficiency/waste reduction

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lewis, R.E.; Moore, N.L.


    For some time industry has recognized the importance of both energy efficiency/waste reduction (ee/wr) and quality/manufacturing improvement. However, industry has not particularly recognized that manufacturing efficiency is, in part, the result of a more efficient use of energy. For that reason, the energy efficiency efforts of most companies have involved admonishing employees to save energy. Few organizations have invested resources in training programs aimed at increasing energy efficiency and reducing waste. This describes a program to demonstrate how existing utility and government training and incentive programs can be leveraged to increase ee/wr and benefit both industry and consumers. Fortunately, there are a variety of training tools and resources that can be applied to educating workers on the benefits of energy efficiency and waste reduction. What is lacking is a method of integrating ee/wr training with other important organizational needs. The key, therefore, is to leverage ee/wr investments with other organizational improvement programs. There are significant strides to be made by training industry to recognize fully the contribution that energy efficiency gains make to the bottom line. The federal government stands in the unique position of being able to leverage the investments already made by states, utilities, and manufacturing associations by coordinating training programs and defining the contribution of energy-efficiency practices. These aims can be accomplished by: developing better measures of energy efficiency and waste reduction; promoting methods of leveraging manufacturing efficiency programs with energy efficiency concepts; helping industry understand how ee/wr investments can increase profits; promoting research on the needs of, and most effective ways to, reach the small and medium-sized businesses that so often lack the time, information, and finances to effectively use the hardware and training technologies available.

  4. Improvements of soil quality for increased food production in Norway (United States)

    Øygarden, Lillian; Klakegg, Ove; Børresen, Trond; Krogstad, Tore; Kjersti Uhlen, Anne


    Since the 1990ties, agricultural land in use in Norway has diminished and yields per hectare for cereals and forages have stagnated. An expert panel appointed to advice on how to increase Norwegian grain production emphasizes low profitability and poor soil quality as limiting factors. A White Paper from the Norwegian Government, Report No.9 (2011-2012), stated that the main goal for the agricultural sector is to increase food production proportional to the expected increase in population (20 % by 2030) in order to maintain self-sufficiency at the present level. This is the background for the interdisciplinary project AGROPRO "Agronomy for increased food production - Challenges and solutions" (2013 - 2017)" financed by the Norwegian research council. A mail goal is seeking possibilities for improvements in agronomic practices for increased and sustainable food production and to identify drivers and challenges for their implementation. Are the key to higher yields hidden in the soil? The paper present an overview of the research activities in the project and some results of the improvements of soil quality to minimize yield gap in cereal and forage production. Detailed new soil maps provide soil information on field scale of soil quality and the suitability for growing different crops like cereal production or vegetables. The detailed soil information is also beeing used for development and adaptation of the planning tool «Terranimo» to reduce risk of soil compaction.The farmer get available soil information for each field, provide information about the maschinery in use- tractors and equipment, tyres, pressure. The decision tool evaluate when the soil is suitable for tillage, calculate the risk of compaction for dry, moist and wet soil. New research data for compaction on Norwegian clay and silt soil are included. Climate change with wetter conditions gives challenges for growing cereals. The project is testing genetic variation in cereals for tolerance to water

  5. Benchmarking: a method for continuous quality improvement in health. (United States)

    Ettorchi-Tardy, Amina; Levif, Marie; Michel, Philippe


    Benchmarking, a management approach for implementing best practices at best cost, is a recent concept in the healthcare system. The objectives of this paper are to better understand the concept and its evolution in the healthcare sector, to propose an operational definition, and to describe some French and international experiences of benchmarking in the healthcare sector. To this end, we reviewed the literature on this approach's emergence in the industrial sector, its evolution, its fields of application and examples of how it has been used in the healthcare sector. Benchmarking is often thought to consist simply of comparing indicators and is not perceived in its entirety, that is, as a tool based on voluntary and active collaboration among several organizations to create a spirit of competition and to apply best practices. The key feature of benchmarking is its integration within a comprehensive and participatory policy of continuous quality improvement (CQI). Conditions for successful benchmarking focus essentially on careful preparation of the process, monitoring of the relevant indicators, staff involvement and inter-organizational visits. Compared to methods previously implemented in France (CQI and collaborative projects), benchmarking has specific features that set it apart as a healthcare innovation. This is especially true for healthcare or medical-social organizations, as the principle of inter-organizational visiting is not part of their culture. Thus, this approach will need to be assessed for feasibility and acceptability before it is more widely promoted.

  6. Water quality improvement through bioretention: lead, copper, and zinc removal. (United States)

    Davis, Allen P; Shokouhian, Mohammad; Sharma, Himanshu; Minami, Christie; Winogradoff, Derek


    Intensive automobile use, weathering of building materials, and atmospheric deposition contribute lead, copper, zinc, and other heavy metals to urban and roadway runoff. Bioretention is a low-impact-development best management practice that has the potential to improve stormwater quality from developed areas. The practice represents a soil, sand, organic matter, and vegetation-based storage and infiltration facility used in parking lots and on individual lots to treat runoff. Investigations using pilot-plant laboratory bioretention systems and two existing bioretention facilities documented their effectiveness at removing low levels of lead, copper, and zinc from synthetic stormwater runoff. Removal rates of these metals (based on concentration and total mass) were excellent, reaching close to 100% for all metals under most conditions, with effluent copper and lead levels mostly less than 5 microg/L and zinc less than 25 microg/L. Somewhat less removal was noted for shallow bioretention depths. Runoff pH, duration, intensity, and pollutant concentrations were varied, and all had minimal effect on removal. The two field investigations generally supported the laboratory studies. Overall, excellent removal of dissolved heavy metals can be expected through bioretention infiltration. Although the accumulation of metals is a concern, buildup problems are not anticipated for more than 15 years because of the low metal concentrations expected in runoff.

  7. Hospital employment of physicians does not improve quality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robbins RA


    Full Text Available No abstract available. Article truncated at 150 words. The Annals of Internal Medicine posted a manuscript online today reporting that the growing trend of physician employment by hospitals does not improve quality (1. In 2003, approximately 29% of hospitals employed members of their physician workforce, a number that rose to 42% by 2012. The authors conducted a retrospective cohort study of U.S. acute care hospitals between 2003 and 2012 and examined mortality rates, 30-day readmission rates, length of stay, and patient satisfaction scores for common medical conditions for 803 hospitals that switched to the employment model compared with 2085 control hospitals that did not switch. Switching hospitals were more likely to be large (11.6% vs. 7.1% or major teaching hospitals (7.5% vs. 4.5% and less likely to be for-profit institutions (8.8% vs. 19.9% (all p values <0.001. The authors used Medicare Provider Analysis and Review File (MedPAR from 2002 to 2013 to calculate hospital-level risk-adjusted performance on mortality ...

  8. Quality improvement methodologies increase autologous blood product administration. (United States)

    Hodge, Ashley B; Preston, Thomas J; Fitch, Jill A; Harrison, Sheilah K; Hersey, Diane K; Nicol, Kathleen K; Naguib, Aymen N; McConnell, Patrick I; Galantowicz, Mark


    Whole blood from the heart-lung (bypass) machine may be processed through a cell salvaging device (i.e., cell saver [CS]) and subsequently administered to the patient during cardiac surgery. It was determined at our institution that CS volume was being discarded. A multidisciplinary team consisting of anesthesiologists, perfusionists, intensive care physicians, quality improvement (QI) professionals, and bedside nurses met to determine the challenges surrounding autologous blood delivery in its entirety. A review of cardiac surgery patients' charts (n = 21) was conducted for analysis of CS waste. After identification of practices that were leading to CS waste, interventions were designed and implemented. Fishbone diagram, key driver diagram, Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) cycles, and data collection forms were used throughout this QI process to track and guide progress regarding CS waste. Of patients under 6 kg (n = 5), 80% had wasted CS blood before interventions, whereas those patients larger than 36 kg (n = 8) had 25% wasted CS before interventions. Seventy-five percent of patients under 6 kg who had wasted CS blood received packed red blood cell transfusions in the cardiothoracic intensive care unit within 24 hours of their operation. After data collection and didactic education sessions (PDSA Cycle I), CS blood volume waste was reduced to 5% in all patients. Identification and analysis of the root cause followed by implementation of education, training, and management of change (PDSA Cycle II) resulted in successful use of 100% of all CS blood volume.

  9. Initial Investigation of Using Planar Interdigital Sensors for Assessment of Quality in Seafood

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. R. Mohd Syaifudin


    Full Text Available A planar interdigital sensor-based sensing system has been fabricated for assessment of seafood quality. Our main objective is to sense the molecule of domoic acid presence in mussels. Three peptide derivatives namely sarcosine, proline, and hydroxylproline were used for the initial studies which are structurally closely related to our target molecule. The proline molecule is arguably the most important amino acid in peptide conformation, containing the basic structural similarity to the domoic acid. Three novel interdigital sensors have been designed and fabricated. The initial result shows that sensors respond very well to the chemicals and it is possible to discriminate the different chemicals from the output of the sensor. Results from the analysis have shown that Sensor_1 has better sensitivity compared to other sensors. Sensor_1 was chosen for further analysis with real mussels. The changes in sensor impedance were then analysed with real mussels before and after adding the proline. The presence of proline on the mussel samples was detected by the sensor. Results also showed a good correlation of 2 = 0.717 between sensitivity and sample thickness.

  10. Improving Initiation and Tracking of Research Projects at an Academic Health Center: A Case Study. (United States)

    Schmidt, Susanne; Goros, Martin; Parsons, Helen M; Saygin, Can; Wan, Hung-Da; Shireman, Paula K; Gelfond, Jonathan A L


    Research service cores at academic health centers are important in driving translational advancements. Specifically, biostatistics and research design units provide services and training in data analytics, biostatistics, and study design. However, the increasing demand and complexity of assigning appropriate personnel to time-sensitive projects strains existing resources, potentially decreasing productivity and increasing costs. Improving processes for project initiation, assigning appropriate personnel, and tracking time-sensitive projects can eliminate bottlenecks and utilize resources more efficiently. In this case study, we describe our application of lean six sigma principles to our biostatistics unit to establish a systematic continual process improvement cycle for intake, allocation, and tracking of research design and data analysis projects. The define, measure, analyze, improve, and control methodology was used to guide the process improvement. Our goal was to assess and improve the efficiency and effectiveness of operations by objectively measuring outcomes, automating processes, and reducing bottlenecks. As a result, we developed a web-based dashboard application to capture, track, categorize, streamline, and automate project flow. Our workflow system resulted in improved transparency, efficiency, and workload allocation. Using the dashboard application, we reduced the average study intake time from 18 to 6 days, a 66.7% reduction over 12 months (January to December 2015).

  11. Establishing a portfolio of quality-improvement projects in pediatric surgery through advanced improvement leadership systems. (United States)

    Gerrein, Betsy T; Williams, Christina E; Von Allmen, Daniel


    Formal quality-improvement (QI) projects require that participants are educated in QI methods to provide them with the capability to carry out successful, meaningful work. However, orchestrating a portfolio of projects that addresses the strategic mission of the institution requires an extension of basic QI training to provide the division or business unit with the capacity to successfully develop and manage the portfolio. Advanced Improvement Leadership Systems is a program to help units create a meaningful portfolio. This program, used by the Division of Pediatric General and Thoracic Surgery at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, helped establish a portfolio of targeted QI projects designed to achieve outstanding outcomes at competitive costs in multiple clinical areas aligned with the institution's strategic goals (improve disease-based outcomes, patient safety, flow, and patient and family experience). These objectives are addressed in an institutional strategic plan built around 5 core areas: Safety, Productivity, Care Coordination and Outcomes, Patient and Family Experience, and Value. By combining the portfolio of QI projects with improvements in the divisional infrastructure, effective improvement efforts were realized throughout the division. In the 9 months following the program, divisional capability resulted in a 16.5% increase (5.7% to 22.2%) of formally trained staff working on 10 QI teams. Concurrently, a leadership team, designed to coordinate projects, remove barriers, and provide technical support, provided the capacity to pursue this ongoing effort. The Advanced Improvement Leadership Systems program increased the Division's efficiency and effectiveness in pursing the QI mission that is integral at our hospital.

  12. A quality initiative of postoperative radiographic imaging performed on mastectomy specimens to reduce histology cost and pathology report turnaround time. (United States)

    Kallen, Michael E; Sim, Myung S; Radosavcev, Bryan L; Humphries, Romney M; Ward, Dawn C; Apple, Sophia K


    Breast pathology relies on gross dissection for accurate diagnostic work, but challenges can necessitate submission of high tissue volumes resulting in excess labor, laboratory costs, and delays. To address these issues, a quality initiative was created through implementation of the Faxitron PathVision specimen radiography system as part of the breast gross dissection protocol; this report documents its impact on workflow and clinical care. Retrospective data from 459 patients who underwent simple or modified radical mastectomy at our institution between May 2012 and December 2014 were collected. Comparison was made between the mastectomy specimen control group before radiography use (233 patients, 340 breasts) and Faxitron group that underwent postoperative radiography (226 patients, 338 breasts). We observed a statistically significant decrease in mean number of blocks between control and Faxitron groups (47.0 vs 39.7 blocks; Pmastectomy. A statistically significant decrease in pathology report turnaround time was also observed (4.2 vs 3.8days; P=.038). Postoperative mastectomy specimen radiography has increased workflow efficiency and decreased histology costs and pathology report turnaround time. These findings may underestimate actual benefits and highlight the importance of quality improvement projects in anatomical pathology.

  13. 45 CFR 98.51 - Activities to improve the quality of child care. (United States)


    ... 45 Public Welfare 1 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Activities to improve the quality of child care... the quality of child care. (a) No less than four percent of the aggregate funds expended by the Lead...) Activities to improve the quality of child care services may include, but are not limited to: (i)...

  14. Improving the Process of Education: Total Quality Management for the College Classroom. (United States)

    Gilbert, James P.; And Others


    A systematic, institutional approach to continuous improvement in college instruction is outlined, based on the four main elements of Total Quality Management: quality defined by customer; top leadership responsibility; systematic analysis of work processes; and continuous quality improvement throughout the organization. Definitions and dimensions…

  15. Employment of Active Learning at HEIs in Bangladesh to Improve Education Quality (United States)

    Chowdhury, Faieza


    In recent years, education quality and quality assessment have received a great deal of attention at Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) in Bangladesh. Most of the HEIs in Bangladesh face severe resource constraints and find it difficult to improve education quality by improving inputs, such as better infrastructure and modernized classroom…

  16. Optimally oriented grooves on dental implants improve bone quality around implants under repetitive mechanical loading. (United States)

    Kuroshima, Shinichiro; Nakano, Takayoshi; Ishimoto, Takuya; Sasaki, Muneteru; Inoue, Maaya; Yasutake, Munenori; Sawase, Takashi


    The aim was to investigate the effect of groove designs on bone quality under controlled-repetitive load conditions for optimizing dental implant design. Anodized Ti-6Al-4V alloy implants with -60° and +60° grooves around the neck were placed in the proximal tibial metaphysis of rabbits. The application of a repetitive mechanical load was initiated via the implants (50N, 3Hz, 1800 cycles, 2days/week) at 12weeks after surgery for 8weeks. Bone quality, defined as osteocyte density and degree of biological apatite (BAp) c-axis/collagen fibers, was then evaluated. Groove designs did not affect bone quality without mechanical loading; however, repetitive mechanical loading significantly increased bone-to-implant contact, bone mass, and bone mineral density (BMD). In +60° grooves, the BAp c-axis/collagen fibers preferentially aligned along the groove direction with mechanical loading. Moreover, osteocyte density was significantly higher both inside and in the adjacent region of the +60° grooves, but not -60° grooves. These results suggest that the +60° grooves successfully transmitted the load to the bone tissues surrounding implants through the grooves. An optimally oriented groove structure on the implant surface was shown to be a promising way for achieving bone tissue with appropriate bone quality. This is the first report to propose the optimal design of grooves on the necks of dental implants for improving bone quality parameters as well as BMD. The findings suggest that not only BMD, but also bone quality, could be a useful clinical parameter in implant dentistry.

  17. What Research On Learning Transfer Can Teach About Improving The Impact of Leadership-Development Initiatives

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sørensen, Peter


    The worldwide effort to improve organizational performance through leadership Development has been impressive, with huge sums of money being devoted to it each year. Unfortunately, the evaluation of the impact of leadership development has not kept pace, resulting in little evidence-based guidance...... for creating programs and interventions. There is a significant and relevant area of research that can contribute to evaluation but that has often been neglected in the leadership-development field: the work on learning transfer. This article provides a brief practical review of the literature on learning...... transfer and the conditions that make it possible for people to apply in the workplace what they learn from a development initiative. This is followed by a report on an initial study of how managers in the Danish public sector perceive their organizations in terms of 9 key transfer conditions identified...

  18. Association of initial CT findings with quality-of-life outcomes for traumatic brain injury in children

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Swanson, Jonathan O. [Seattle Children' s Hospital and University of Washington, Department of Radiology, Seattle, WA (United States); Vavilala, Monica S.; Wang, Jin; Rivara, Frederick P. [Harborview Medical Center, University of Washington, Department of Pediatrics, Seattle, WA (United States); Pruthi, Sumit [Monroe Carell Jr. Children' s Hospital at Vanderbilt University, Department of Radiology, Nashville, TN (United States); Fink, James [University of Washington, Department of Radiology, Seattle, WA (United States); Jaffe, Kenneth M. [University of Washington, Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, Seattle, WA (United States); Durbin, Dennis [University of Pennsylvania, Department of Pediatrics, Center for Injury Research and Prevention, The Children' s Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA (United States); Koepsell, Thomas [University of Washington, Department of Epidemiology, Seattle, WA (United States); Temkin, Nancy [University of Washington, Biostatistics, Seattle, WA (United States)


    Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a leading cause of acquired disability in children and adolescents. To demonstrate the association between specific findings on initial noncontrast head CT and long-term outcomes in children who have suffered TBI. This was an IRB-approved prospective study of children ages 2-17 years treated in emergency departments for TBI and who underwent a head CT as part of the initial work-up (n = 347). The change in quality of life at 12 months after injury was measured by the PedsQL scale. Children with TBI who had intracranial injuries identified on the initial head CT had a significantly lower quality-of-life scores compared to children with TBI whose initial head CTs were normal. In multivariate analysis, children whose initial head CT scans demonstrated intraventricular hemorrhage, parenchymal injury, midline shift {>=}5 mm, hemorrhagic shear injury, abnormal cisterns or subdural hematomas {>=}3 mm had lower quality of life scores 1 year after injury than children whose initial CTs did not have these same injuries. Associations exist between findings from the initial noncontrast head CT and quality of life score 12 months after injury in children with TBI. (orig.)

  19. Improving Perinatal Mental Health Care for Women Veterans: Description of a Quality Improvement Program. (United States)

    Katon, Jodie G; Lewis, Lacey; Hercinovic, Selma; McNab, Amanda; Fortney, John; Rose, Susan M


    Purpose We describe results from a quality improvement project undertaken to address perinatal mental healthcare for women veterans. Description This quality improvement project was conducted in a single VA healthcare system between 2012 and 2015 and included screening for depressive symptoms with the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) three times during the perinatal period, a dedicated maternity care coordinator (MCC), an on-site clinical social worker, and an on-site obstetrician/gynecologist (Ob/gyn). Information on prior mental health diagnosis was collected by the MCC or Ob/gyn. The prevalence of perinatal depressive symptoms and receipt of mental healthcare among those with such symptoms are reported by presence of a pre-pregnancy mental health diagnosis. Assessment Of the 199 women who used VA maternity benefits between 2012 and 2015, 56% (n = 111) had at least one pre-pregnancy mental health diagnosis. Compared to those without a pre-pregnancy mental health diagnosis, those with such a diagnosis were more likely to be screened for perinatal depressive symptoms at least once (61.5% vs. 46.8%, p = 0.04). Prevalence of depressive symptoms was 46.7% among those with a pre-pregnancy mental health diagnosis and 19.2% among those without. Among those with a pre-pregnancy mental health diagnosis and depressive symptoms (n = 35), 88% received outpatient mental healthcare and 77% met with the clinical social worker. Among those without a pre-pregnancy mental health diagnosis and depressive symptoms (n = 8), none received outpatient mental healthcare, but 77.8% met with the clinical social worker. Conclusion Improving perinatal mental healthcare for women veterans requires a multidisciplinary approach, including on-site integrated mental healthcare.

  20. Strategies for Developing and Recognizing Faculty Working in Quality Improvement and Patient Safety. (United States)

    Coleman, David L; Wardrop, Richard M; Levinson, Wendy S; Zeidel, Mark L; Parsons, Polly E


    Academic clinical departments have the opportunity and responsibility to improve the quality and value of care and patient safety by supporting effective quality improvement activities. The pressure to provide high-value care while further developing academic programs has increased the complexity of decision making and change management in academic health systems. Overcoming these challenges will require faculty engagement and leadership; however, most academic departments do not have a sufficient number of individuals with expertise and experience in quality improvement and patient safety (QI/PS). Accordingly, the authors of this article advocate for a targeted and proactive approach to developing faculty working in QI/PS. They propose a strategy predicated on the identification of QI/PS as a strategic priority for academic departments, the creation of enabling resources in QI/PS, and the expansion of rigorous training programs in change management and in improvement and implementation sciences. Professional organizations, health systems, medical schools, and academic departments should recognize successful QI/PS work with awards and promotions. Individual faculty members should expand their collaborative networks, consider the generalizability and scholarly impact of their efforts when designing QI/PS initiatives, and benchmark the outcomes of their performance. Appointments and promotions committees should work proactively with department and QI/PS leaders to ensure that outstanding achievement in QI/PS is defined and recognized. As with the development of physician-investigators and clinician-educators, departments and health systems need a comprehensive approach to support and recognize the contributions of faculty working in QI/PS to meet the considerable needs and opportunities in health care.

  1. Factors influencing success in quality-improvement collaboratives: development and psychometric testing of an instrument

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grol Richard PTM


    Full Text Available Abstract Background To increase the effectiveness of quality-improvement collaboratives (QICs, it is important to explore factors that potentially influence their outcomes. For this purpose, we have developed and tested the psychometric properties of an instrument that aims to identify the features that may enhance the quality and impact of collaborative quality-improvement approaches. The instrument can be used as a measurement instrument to retrospectively collect information about perceived determinants of success. In addition, it can be prospectively applied as a checklist to guide initiators, facilitators, and participants of QICs, with information about how to perform or participate in a collaborative with theoretically optimal chances of success. Such information can be used to improve collaboratives. Methods We developed an instrument with content validity based on literature and the opinions of QIC experts. We collected data from 144 healthcare professionals in 44 multidisciplinary improvement teams participating in two QICs and used exploratory factor analysis to assess the construct validity. We used Cronbach's alpha to ascertain the internal consistency. Results The 50-item instrument we developed reflected expert-opinion-based determinants of success in a QIC. We deleted nine items after item reduction. On the basis of the factor analysis results, one item was dropped, which resulted in a 40-item questionnaire. Exploratory factor analysis showed that a three-factor model provided the best fit. The components were labeled 'sufficient expert team support', 'effective multidisciplinary teamwork', and 'helpful collaborative processes'. Internal consistency reliability was excellent (alphas between .85 and .89. Conclusions This newly developed instrument seems a promising tool for providing healthcare workers and policy makers with useful information about determinants of success in QICs. The psychometric properties of the instrument are

  2. A multifaceted approach to improving the quality of ENT Emergency Clinic referrals (United States)

    Swords, Chloe; Leach, Laura; Kasbekar, Anand; Jani, Piyush


    It is imperative that primary care referrals are directed to the appropriate secondary care service. Patients presenting to a primary care physician with ENT conditions may require review in an Emergency Clinic. The latter clinics provide patients with rapid access to secondary care, for urgent, yet non-life-threatening conditions. In our department, we noticed that patients with conditions inappropriate to the capabilities of the Clinic were being booked in or reviewed too late; thus causing wasted journeys for the patient. We conducted a Quality Improvement Project to improve the efficiency of the referral process. A prospective evaluation of referrals was collected continuously over a two-month period. Overall, 5 domains were deemed crucial to enable timely and accurate booking of patients to clinic: booking date, urgency, legibility, patient identification and appropriateness. Our proposed standard set for this project was 100% compliance over the 5 domains. Three separate interventions were instigated following the first cycle. The main components of the intervention were the phased development of an electronic referral system and an educational initiative for junior doctors. 20 referral forms were analysed during the initial 3-week period. No referrals met the recommended overall compliance standard of 100% (mean number of domains achieved: 3.38; standard deviation (SD): 0.637). Legibility and patient information were included in 21% and 30% of referrals, respectively. There was a trend of improvement following initiation of interventions. The mean number of domains achieved was 4.27 (SD 0.647; n=13) in the second data collection period, 4.53 (SD 0.514; n=16) in the third, and 4.75 (SD 0.452; n=24) in the fourth. Using linear regression, this change demonstrates a statistically significant improvement (psystem represents a safe and efficient communication technology. When implementing policy change, it is crucial to acquire managerial and consultant support

  3. Practical guidelines for radiographers to improve computed radiography image quality. (United States)

    Pongnapang, N


    Computed Radiography (CR) has become a major digital imaging modality in a modern radiological department. CR system changes workflow from the conventional way of using film/screen by employing photostimulable phosphor plate technology. This results in the changing perspectives of technical, artefacts and quality control issues in radiology departments. Guidelines for better image quality in digital medical enterprise include professional guidelines for users and the quality control programme specifically designed to serve the best quality of clinical images. Radiographers who understand technological shift of the CR from conventional method can employ optimization of CR images. Proper anatomic collimation and exposure techniques for each radiographic projection are crucial steps in producing quality digital images. Matching image processing with specific anatomy is also important factor that radiographers should realise. Successful shift from conventional to fully digitised radiology department requires skilful radiographers who utilise the technology and a successful quality control program from teamwork in the department.

  4. Practical guidelines for radiographers to improve computed radiography image quality


    Pongnapang, N


    Computed Radiography (CR) has become a major digital imaging modality in a modern radiological department. CR system changes workflow from the conventional way of using film/screen by employing photostimulable phosphor plate technology. This results in the changing perspectives of technical, artefacts and quality control issues in radiology departments. Guidelines for better image quality in digital medical enterprise include professional guidelines for users and the quality control programme...

  5. Developing a consumer reporting program in Malaysia: a novel initiative to improve pharmacovigilance. (United States)

    Palaian, Subish; Alshakka, Mohammed; Mohamed Izham


    The national pharmacovigilance program in Malaysia is limited to very few centers and under-reporting of adverse drug reactions (ADRs) is a major limitation. Studies from developed countries have documented the importance and usefulness of consumer reporting of ADRs. Involving consumers in ADR reporting can be very useful in improving the reporting rates in Malaysia. The present article highlights the proposed plan of initiating a consumer based pharmacovigilance program in University Wellness Center located inside the campus of the Universiti Sains Malaysia, Penang, Malaysia.

  6. Routing Autonomous Vehicles in the Improving Initial Task Assignment and Avoiding Deadlock Method (United States)

    Morihiro, Yusuke; Miyamoto, Toshiyuki; Kumagai, Sadatoshi

    This paper discusses an on-line Tasks Assignment and Routing Problem (TARP) for Autonomous Transportation Systems (ATSs) in manufacturing systems. The TARP is a constrained version of the Pickup and Delivery Problem with Time Windows (PDPTW). In our former study, a cooperative algorithm, called the triple loop method, with autonomous distributed agents has been proposed. The Improving initial Task Assignment and Avoiding Deadlock method (ITAAD) is a faster algorithm than the triple loop method. In this paper, we propose a new vehicle routing method for the ITAAD. Results of computational experiments show effectiveness of the proposed routing method.

  7. The improvement of technical preparation of sprinters on the initial stage of sport training

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maleniuk T.V.


    Full Text Available Directions of perfection of technical preparation of sprinters are examined on the initial stage of the sporting training. The basic elements of technique at run are certain 100 meters. The system of criteria of estimation of technical preparedness of sprinters is developed. The certain lacks of technical preparedness are exposed. The method of improvement of technical preparation is developed and its efficiency is tested. The system of criteria of estimation of technical preparedness of sprinters is developed. A general tendency is exposed to their finding on middle, above average and to high levels.

  8. Quality Improvement Interventions for Early HIV Infant Diagnosis in Northeastern Uganda. (United States)

    Izudi, Jonathan; Akot, Agnes; Kisitu, Grace Paul; Amuge, Pauline; Kekitiinwa, Adeodata


    Introduction. Early infant diagnosis (EID) of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) ensures prompt treatment and infant survival. In Kaabong Hospital, 20% of HIV exposed infants (HEIs) had access to HIV diagnosis by eight weeks. We aimed to improve EID of HIV by deoxyribonucleic acid-polymerase chain reaction (DNA-PCR) testing by eight weeks from 20 to 100% between June 2014 and November 2015. Method. In this quality improvement (QI) project, EID data was reviewed, gaps prioritized using theme matrix selection, root causes analyzed using fishbone tool, and improvement changes were selected using counter measures matrix but implemented using Plan-Do-Study-Act cycle. Root causes of low first DNA-PCR testing included maternal EID ignorance, absent lost mother-baby pairs (LMBP) tracking system, and no EID performance reviews. Health education, Continuous Medical Education (CMEs), and integration of laboratory and EID services were initial improvement changes used. Results. DNA-PCR testing increased from 20 to 100% between June 2014 and July 2015 and was sustained at 100% until February 2016. Two declines, 67% in September 2014 and 75% in June 2015, due to LMBP were addressed using expert clients and peer mothers, respectively. Conclusion. Formation of WIT, laboratory service integration at MBCP, and task shifting along EID cascade improved EID outcomes at 6 weeks.

  9. The urgent need for quality improvement in Russia. (United States)

    Ruevekamp, D


    Induced abortion became accepted as a legal method of family planning after the October Revolution of 1917 from which terminations were performed in state hospitals free of charge upon a woman's request. The procedure was made legal in response to then newly voiced egalitarian ideals and the increasing involvement of women in the labor market, as well as because of the rapidly deteriorating situation and post-Revolution period of famine. Administrators fully expected to reduce the incidence of abortion once living conditions improved. Little was done at the time to develop contraceptives. Stalin, however, in the 1920s and 1930s, lamented a falling birth rate in the face of manpower needed for labor and the military; abortion and contraceptives were banned, leading to post-abortion complications without really stimulating the birth rate. Abortion was relegalized in 1956, but the right to contraception was never fully restored. Seven million induced abortions were officially registered to have taken place in each of the last ten years in the former Soviet Union. A woman typically undergoes one abortion per year, or approximately twenty abortions during the childbearing period of her life. Lacking knowledge about contraception, contraceptives, and what many Western countries regard to be women's reproductive health rights, most Russian women, however, freely tolerate frequent repeated abortion as a normal method of fertility regulation. Lack of access to contraceptives along with the lack of domestic contraceptive method production facilities and lack of hard currency to secure quality supplies from abroad are contributing factors to this ongoing trend. Gynecologists also receive lucrative fees for illegal abortions and are unlikely to promote change. Plans to open twelve family planning centers in Moscow have been hampered by the inertia of bureaucracy, the lack of financial means, the lack of trained personnel, and people's suspicion of government bodies. Much needs

  10. Improving the quality of care in Chinese family planning programme. (United States)

    Jiang, Y; Geng, Q; Haffey, J; Douglas, E


    The Chinese State Family Planning Commission (SFPC) is the government department responsible for coordinating and implementing the national population and family planning programs. The commission includes about 300,000 family planning workers and 50 million volunteers. Community workers provide IEC and technical services to couples of reproductive age. In July 1991, SFPC began a five year project to train rural family planning workers in contraceptive technology and interpersonal communication and counseling. These workers were important because of their service to a population of 800 million or 75% of total population. The training program was part of an effort to standardize training and institutionalize it throughout the country. The project involved 20 pilot training stations in 19 provinces. The primary task was to train family planning workers at the grassroots level. 80,000 persons were expected to be trained during the five years. Activities included a training needs assessment, development of training curricula and programs, training of workers, and monitoring and evaluation. Training techniques and topics will include participatory training methods, interpersonal communication and counseling, development of audience based training methods, issues of contraceptive choice and quality of care, and counseling issues such as sexually transmitted disease and HIV infection prevention. About 40,000 family planning workers and volunteers were trained by 1992 in counties, townships, and villages. Trainees learned about "informed choice" and the importance of counseling. Feedback from training activities focused on the appreciation for the participatory training methods such as brainstorming, case study, and role play. Workers appreciated the process involved in training as well as the information received. Evaluation showed that clients improved their knowledge and had positive interactions with workers.

  11. Improvement of Production Quality by using Six Sigma Technique:

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sawsan Ali


    Full Text Available As a result of lack of conformity of the outer diameter of the filling piston of plastic syringe to the specifications set out in the design map and the increased demand for its  products from the Medical syringes factory – Babylon. The research conducts the necessary investigations and  analysis of the production process as most of the units rejected by fact that the outer diameter of the filling piston is smaller than the minimum specification and units returned to work  due to the fact that  the outer diameter larger than the upper limit of the specification.13The research aims firstly to examine the outer diameter of the filling piston through the use of the control chart of the variables represented by the average , and its impact on the production process capability because the increase in diameter specification leads to an increase in the pressure imposed on the lining of the cylinder, causing difficulty in piston movement and a decrease in diameter specification which leads to loose the process capability to prevent leakage of fluid, causing air to enter as well as to speed the movement of the piston, which negatively affects human life in both cases. Secondly, study the possibility of improving the production process capability by using advanced levels of the sigma.The results showed that the production process in the case of a disciplined and follows a normal distribution, the pointer of  the production process capability is equal to (0.55 and the factory works within the level of Sigma equal to (1.65. The proportion of a damaged product is (15.8 % and rework (0.99 %.In order to  reduce the proportion of damaged product, this paper introduces a quality plan depending on ( ±0.025 as tolerance limits instead of ( ±0.05 to increase sigma level by 202%.

  12. Comparison of Quality Oncology Practice Initiative (QOPI) Measure Adherence Between Oncology Fellows, Advanced Practice Providers, and Attending Physicians. (United States)

    Zhu, Jason; Zhang, Tian; Shah, Radhika; Kamal, Arif H; Kelley, Michael J


    Quality improvement measures are uniformly applied to all oncology providers, regardless of their roles. Little is known about differences in adherence to these measures between oncology fellows, advance practice providers (APP), and attending physicians. We investigated conformance across Quality Oncology Practice Initiative (QOPI) measures for oncology fellows, advance practice providers, and attending physicians at the Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center (DVAMC). Using data collected from the Spring 2012 and 2013 QOPI cycles, we abstracted charts of patients and separated them based on their primary provider. Descriptive statistics and the chi-square test were calculated for each QOPI measure between fellows, advanced practice providers (APPs), and attending physicians. A total of 169 patients were reviewed. Of these, 31 patients had a fellow, 39 had an APP, and 99 had an attending as their primary oncology provider. Fellows and attending physicians performed similarly on 90 of 94 QOPI metrics. High-performing metrics included several core QOPI measures including documenting consent for chemotherapy, recommending adjuvant chemotherapy when appropriate, and prescribing serotonin antagonists when prescribing emetogenic chemotherapies. Low-performing metrics included documentation of treatment summary and taking action to address problems with emotional well-being by the second office visit. Attendings documented the plan for oral chemotherapy more often (92 vs. 63%, P=0.049). However, after the chart audit, we found that fellows actually documented the plan for oral chemotherapy 88% of the time (p=0.73). APPs and attendings performed similarly on 88 of 90 QOPI measures. The quality of oncology care tends to be similar between attendings and fellows overall; some of the significant differences do not remain significant after a second manual chart review, highlighting that the use of manual data collection for QOPI analysis is an imperfect system, and there may

  13. Double pulse laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy of explosives: Initial study towards improved discrimination

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    De Lucia, Frank C. [U.S. Army Research Laboratory, AMSRD-ARL-WM-BD, Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD, 21005-5069 (United States)], E-mail:; Gottfried, Jennifer L.; Munson, Chase A.; Miziolek, Andrzej W. [U.S. Army Research Laboratory, AMSRD-ARL-WM-BD, Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD, 21005-5069 (United States)


    Detecting trace explosive residues at standoff distances in real-time is a difficult problem. One method ideally suited for real-time standoff detection is laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS). However, atmospheric oxygen and nitrogen contributes to the LIBS signal from the oxygen- and nitrogen-containing explosive compounds, complicating the discrimination of explosives from other organic materials. While bathing the sample in an inert gas will remove atmospheric oxygen and nitrogen interference, it cannot practically be applied for standoff LIBS. Alternatively, we have investigated the potential of double pulse LIBS to improve the discrimination of explosives by diminishing the contribution of atmospheric oxygen and nitrogen to the LIBS signal. These initial studies compare the close-contact (< 1 m) LIBS spectra of explosives using single pulse LIBS in argon with double pulse LIBS in atmosphere. We have demonstrated improved discrimination of an explosive and an organic interferent using double pulse LIBS to reduce the air entrained in the analytical plasma.

  14. Navy Shipbuilding: Opportunities Exist to Improve Practices Affecting Quality (United States)


    Organization for Standardization’s ISO 9001 (quality), 14001 (environmental), and 18001 (occupational health and safety) series of management systems...10In particular, ISO 9001 certification is... ISO 9000 quality management standards. Page 52 GAO-14-122 Navy Shipbuilding commercial shipbuilders we visited did not report having

  15. Electrostatic spraying of antimicrobial coating to improve strawberry quality (United States)

    The increasing consumer demand for fresh, safe, and high-quality strawberry fruits has lately gained interest on the development of new post-harvest methods to prolong their shelf-life and, at the same time, ensure safety and maintain nutritional and sensory quality. Strawberries are perishable frui...

  16. School Policies and Practices that Improve Indoor Air Quality (United States)

    Jones, Sherry Everett; Smith, Alisa M.; Wheeler, Lani S.; McManus, Tim


    Background: To determine whether schools with a formal indoor air quality management program were more likely than schools without a formal program to have policies and practices that promote superior indoor air quality. Methods: This study analyzed school-level data from the 2006 School Health Policies and Programs Study, a national study of…

  17. How to improve food quality management in the bakery sector

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Spiegel, van der M.; Luning, P.A.; Boer, de W.J.; Ziggers, G.W.; Jongen, W.M.F.


    In the food industry, quality assurance (QA) systems are applied to ensure food safety and food quality to prevent liability claims and to build and maintain trust of consumers. Bakeries apply QA systems such as Hygiene code, HACCP (Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points), ISO (International Organi

  18. Peer Review Improves the Quality of MCQ Examinations (United States)

    Malau-Aduli, Bunmi S.; Zimitat, Craig


    The aim of this study was to assess the effect of the introduction of peer review processes on the quality of multiple-choice examinations in the first three years of an Australian medical course. The impact of the peer review process and overall quality assurance (QA) processes were evaluated by comparing the examination data generated in earlier…

  19. Toward Improved Land Surface Initialization in Support of Regional WRF Forecasts at the Kenya Meteorological Department (United States)

    Case. Jonathan; Mungai, John; Sakwa, Vincent; Kabuchanga, Eric; Zavodsky, Bradley T.; Limaye, Ashutosh S.


    Flooding and drought are two key forecasting challenges for the Kenya Meteorological Department (KMD). Atmospheric processes leading to excessive precipitation and/or prolonged drought can be quite sensitive to the state of the land surface, which interacts with the boundary layer of the atmosphere providing a source of heat and moisture. The development and evolution of precipitation systems are affected by heat and moisture fluxes from the land surface within weakly-sheared environments, such as in the tropics and sub-tropics. These heat and moisture fluxes during the day can be strongly influenced by land cover, vegetation, and soil moisture content. Therefore, it is important to represent the land surface state as accurately as possible in numerical weather prediction models. Enhanced regional modeling capabilities have the potential to improve forecast guidance in support of daily operations and high-end events over east Africa. KMD currently runs a configuration of the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model in real time to support its daily forecasting operations, invoking the Nonhydrostatic Mesoscale Model (NMM) dynamical core. They make use of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration / National Weather Service Science and Training Resource Center's Environmental Modeling System (EMS) to manage and produce the WRF-NMM model runs on a 7-km regional grid over eastern Africa. Two organizations at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, AL, SERVIR and the Short-term Prediction Research and Transition (SPoRT) Center, have established a working partnership with KMD for enhancing its regional modeling capabilities. To accomplish this goal, SPoRT and SERVIR will provide experimental land surface initialization datasets and model verification capabilities to KMD. To produce a land-surface initialization more consistent with the resolution of the KMD-WRF runs, the NASA Land Information System (LIS

  20. Efficacy of interventions to improve sleep quality among patients with breast cancer : a systematic review


    Li, Xueqi; 李雪琪


    Introduction: Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women. While advances in therapeutic approaches have improved the survival of breast cancer patients, it is important to improve the quality of life among the cancer survivors. Sleep disturbance is one of the most important problems for breast cancer patients that substantially reduced their quality of life. Many interventions have been developed for improving sleep quality for breast cancer patients. The aim of this review is firstly t...

  1. The CMS Data Quality Monitoring software experience and future improvements

    CERN Document Server

    De Guio, Federico


    The Data Quality Monitoring (DQM) Software proved to be a central tool in the CMS experiment. Its flexibility allowed its integration in several environments Online, for real-time detector monitoring; Offline, for the final, fine-grained Data Certification; Release Validation, to constantly validate the functionality and the performance of the reconstruction software; in Monte Carlo productions. The central tool to deliver Data Quality information is a web site for browsing data quality histograms (DQM GUI). In this contribution the usage of the DQM Software in the different environments and its integration in the CMS Reconstruction Software Framework and in all production workflows are presented.

  2. H8 Electron beam quality improvement during 2001

    CERN Document Server

    Efthymiopoulos, I; CERN. Geneva. SPS and LHC Division


    Since 1999 the ATLAS calorimeter groups who are the main users of the H8 beam line were observing a deterioration of the electron beam quality of the beam. Several studies, within the limited time available due to the tight SPS schedule, were performed before 2001 but without success. Following a systematic study of the problem in 2001, and in collaboration with the ATLAS colleagues, the origin of the problem was found and the beam quality was restored to the level before 1999. Details of the studies performed and the final results on the electron beam quality are summarized here.

  3. Empowering certified nurse's aides to improve quality of work life through a team communication program. (United States)

    Howe, Erin E


    The purpose of this pilot study was to explore the impact of a certified nurse's aide (CNA)-led interdisciplinary teamwork and communication intervention on perceived quality of work environment and six-month job intentions. CNAs are frequently excluded from team communication and decision-making, which often leads to job dissatisfaction with high levels of staff turnover. Using a mixed quantitative and qualitative approach with pre- post-program design, the intervention utilized the strategy of debriefing from the national patient safety initiative, TeamSTEPPS. Inherent in the program design, entitled Long Term Care (LTC) Team Talk, was the involvement of the CNAs in the development of the intervention as an empowering process on two wings of a transitional care unit in a long-term care facility in upstate NY. CNAs' perceptions of work environment quality were measured using a Quality of Work Life (QWL) instrument. Additionally, job turnover intent within six months was assessed. Results indicated improved scores on nearly all QWL subscales anticipated to be impacted, and enhanced perceived empowerment of the CNAs on each wing albeit through somewhat different experiential processes. The program is highly portable and can potentially be implemented in a variety of long-term care settings.

  4. The Quality Initiative in Rectal Cancer (QIRC trial: study protocol of a cluster randomized controlled trial in surgery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thabane Lehana


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Two unfortunate outcomes for patients treated surgically for rectal cancer are placement of a permanent colostomy and local tumor recurrence. Total mesorectal excision is a new technique for rectal cancer surgery that can lead to improved patient outcomes. We describe a cluster randomized controlled trial that is testing if the above patient outcomes can be improved through a knowledge translation strategy called the Quality Initiative in Rectal Cancer (QIRC strategy. The strategy is designed to optimize the use of total mesorectal excision techniques. Methods and Design Hospitals were randomized to the QIRC strategy (experimental group versus normal practice environment (control group. Participating hospitals, and the respective surgeon group operating in them, are from Ontario, Canada and have an annual procedure volume for major rectal cancer resections of 15 or greater. Patients were eligible if they underwent major rectal surgery for a diagnosis of primary rectal cancer. The surgeon-directed QIRC interventions included a workshop, use of opinion leaders, operative demonstrations, a post-operative questionnaire, and, audit and feedback. For an operative demonstration participating surgeons invited a study team surgeon to assist them with a case of rectal cancer surgery. The intent was to demonstrate total mesorectal excision techniques. Control arm surgeons received no intervention. Sample size calculations were two-sided, considered the clustering of data at the hospital level, and were driven by requirements for the outcome local recurrence. To detect an improvement in local recurrence from 20% to 8% with confidence we required 16 hospitals and 672 patients – 8 hospitals and 336 patients in each arm. Outcomes data are collected via chart review for at least 30 months after surgery. Analyses will use an intention-to-treat principle and will consider the clustering of data. Data collection will be complete by the end of

  5. An examination of the Total Quality Management (TQM) concept given current Federal/DoD competition initiatives (United States)

    Stabile, Michael E.


    Quality is vital to our defense and quality improvement is key to increasing productivity. The Department of Defense (DoD) Total Quality Management (TQM) effort has been given top priority by the Secretary of Defense. Many questions exist concerning the problems encountered when implementing TQM throughout DoD. This thesis looks at the compatibility of the TQM philosophy with current Federal Acquisition Regulation competition requirements. The writer concludes that the TQM philosophy implementation is compatible with existing competition policy.

  6. Enabling Continuous Quality Improvement in Practice: The Role and Contribution of Facilitation (United States)

    Harvey, Gillian; Lynch, Elizabeth


    Facilitating the implementation of continuous quality improvement (CQI) is a complex undertaking. Numerous contextual factors at a local, organizational, and health system level can influence the trajectory and ultimate success of an improvement program. Some of these contextual factors are amenable to modification, others less so. As part of planning and implementing healthcare improvement, it is important to assess and build an understanding of contextual factors that might present barriers to or enablers of implementation. On the basis of this initial diagnosis, it should then be possible to design and implement the improvement intervention in a way that is responsive to contextual barriers and enablers, often described as “tailoring” the implementation approach. Having individuals in the active role of facilitators is proposed as an effective way of delivering a context-sensitive, tailored approach to implementing CQI. This paper presents an overview of the facilitator role in implementing CQI. Drawing on empirical evidence from the use of facilitator roles in healthcare, the type of skills and knowledge required will be considered, along with the type of facilitation strategies that can be employed in the implementation process. Evidence from both case studies and systematic reviews of facilitation will be reviewed and key lessons for developing and studying the role in the future identified. PMID:28275594


    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nelson, E.


    The Savannah River National Laboratory implemented a constructed wetland treatment system (CWTS) in 2000 to treat industrial discharge and stormwater from the Laboratory area. The industrial discharge volume is 3,030 m{sup 3} per day with elevated toxicity and metals (copper, zinc and mercury). The CWTS was identified as the best treatment option based on performance, capital and continuing cost, and schedule. A key factor for this natural system approach was the long-term binding capacity of heavy metals (especially copper, lead, and zinc) in the organic matter and sediments. The design required that the wetland treat the average daily discharge volume and be able to handle 83,280 m{sup 3} of stormwater runoff in a 24 hour period. The design allowed all water flow within the system to be driven entirely by gravity. The CWTS for A-01 outfall is composed of eight one-acre wetland cells connected in pairs and planted with giant bulrush to provide continuous organic matter input to the system. The retention basin was designed to hold stormwater flow and to allow controlled discharge to the wetland. The system became operational in October of 2000 and is the first wetland treatment system permitted by South Carolina DHEC for removal of metals. Because of the exceptional performance of the A-01 CWTS, the same strategy was used to improve water quality of the H-02 outfall that receives discharge and stormwater from the Tritium Area of SRS. The primary contaminants in this outfall were also copper and zinc. The design for this second system required that the wetland treat the average discharge volume of 415 m{sup 3} per day, and be able to handle 9,690 m{sup 3} of stormwater runoff in a 24 hour period. This allowed the building of a system much smaller than the A-01 CWTS. The system became operational in July 2007. Metal removal has been excellent since water flow through the treatment systems began, and performance improved with the maturation of the vegetation during

  8. Effect of alternate day collection on semen quality of Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) with poor initial fresh semen quality

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Imrat, P.; Mahasawangkul, Sittidet; Thitaram, Chatchote; Suthanmapinanth, P.; Kornkaewrat, K.; Sombutputorn, P.; Jansittiwate, S.; Thongtip, Nikorn; Pinyopummin, A.; Colenbrander, B.; Holt, W.V.; Stout, Tom


    In captivity, male Asian elephants often yield poor quality semen after transrectal manually assisted semen collection; however, the reasons for the disappointing semen quality are not clear. Here we test the hypothesis that accumulation of senescent spermatozoa is a contributory factor, and that se


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)



    Full Text Available In our lives are governed by large, complex systems with increasingly complex software, and the safety, security, and reliability of these systems has become a major concern. As the software in today’ssystems grows larger, it has more defects, and these defects adversely affect the safety, security, and reliability of the systems. Software engineering is the application of a systematic, disciplined, quantifiable approach to the development, operation, andmaintenance of software. Software divides into two pieces: internal and external quality characteristics.External quality characteristics are those parts of a product that face its users, where internal quality characteristics are those that do not.Quality is conformance to product requirements and should be free. This research concerns the role of software Quality. Software reliability is an important facet of software quality. It is the probability of failure-freeoperation of a computer program in a specified environment for a specified time. In software reliability modeling, the parameters of the model are typically estimated from the test data of the corresponding component. However, the widely used point estimatorsare subject to random variations in the data, resulting in uncertainties in these estimated parameters. This research describes a new approach to the problem of software testing. The approach is based on Bayesian graphical models and presents formal mechanisms forthe logical structuring of the software testing problem, the probabilistic and statistical treatment of the uncertainties to be addressed, the test design and analysis process, and the incorporation and implication of test results. Once constructed, the models produced are dynamic representations of the software testingproblem. It explains need of the common test-and-fix software quality strategy is no longer adequate, and characterizes the properties of the quality strategy.

  10. Molecular Markers in Improvement of Fiber Quality Traits in Cotton

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)



    @@ Cotton is the worlds leading natural fiber crop,and it is the cornerstone of textile industries worldwide.The cotton industry is confronted with problems in cost of production and requirements for high quality in the product.It is an industry in which marketing is based on measurable quality factors and where technological changes are being implemented rapidly and constantly.So the breeders have to constantly breed cotton varieties to suit the requirements of the textile industry.

  11. Improving the accuracy of total quality management instruments. (United States)

    Bechtel, G A; Wood, D


    Total quality management (TQM) instruments are essential tools in defining concepts identified in an Ishikawa or ¿cause-and-effect¿ diagram. Collecting meaningful and accurate data using TQM instruments is imperative if productivity and quality of care are to be enhanced. This article provides managers with techniques and guidelines that will enhance the reliability and validity of TQM instruments, thereby promoting organization efficiency and customer satisfaction.

  12. The impact of a large-scale quality improvement programme on work engagement: preliminary results from a national cross-sectional-survey of the 'Productive Ward'


    White, Mark; Wells, John S G; Butterworth, Tony


    Background: Quality improvement (QI) Programmes, like the Productive Ward: Releasing-time-to-care initiative, aim to 'engage' and 'empower' ward teams to actively participate, innovate and lead quality improvement at the front line. However, little is known about the relationship and impact that QI work has on the 'engagement' of the clinical teams who participate and vice-versa. Objective: This paper explores and examines the impact of a large-scale QI programme, the Productive Ward, on the ...

  13. A Cascaded Fingerprint Quality Assessment Scheme for Improved System Accuracy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zia Saquib


    Full Text Available Poor-quality images mostly result in spurious or missing features, which further degrade the overall performance of fingerprint recognition systems. This paper proposes a reconfigurable scheme of quality checks at two different levels: i at raw image level and ii at feature level. At first level, ellipse properties are calculated through analysis of statistical attributes of the captured raw image. At second level, the singularity points (core and delta are identified and extracted (if any. These information, as quality measures, are used in a cascaded manner to block/pass the image. This model is tested on both publicly available (Cross Match Verifier 300 sensor as well as proprietary (Lumidigm Venus V100 OEM Module sensor fingerprint databases scanned at 500 dpi. The experimental results show that this cascaded arrangement of quality barricades could correctly block poor quality images and hence elevated the overall system accuracy: with quality checks, both FNMR and FMR significantly dropped to 9.52% and 0.26% respectively for Cross Match Dataset and 2.17% and 2.16% respectively for Lumidigm Dataset.

  14. Intelligent Packet Shaper to Avoid Network Congestion for Improved Streaming Video Quality at Clients

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kaul, Manohar; Khosla, Rajiv; Mitsukura, Y


    This paper proposes a traffic shaping algorithm based on neural networks, which adapts to a network over which streaming video is being transmitted. The purpose of this intelligent shaper is to eradicate all traffic congestion and improve the end-user's video quality. It possesses the capability...... to predict, to a very high level of accuracy, a state of congestion based upon the training data collected about the network behaviour. Initially, the current traffic shaping technologies are discussed and later a simulation in a controlled environment is illustrated to exhibit the effects...... of this intelligent traffic-shaping algorithm on the underlying network real time packet traffic and the eradication of unwanted abruption in the streaming video qualiy. This paper concluded from the end results of the simulation that neural networks are a very superior means of modeling real-time traffic...

  15. Does updating improve the methodological and reporting quality of systematic reviews?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hamel Candyce


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Systematic reviews (SRs must be of high quality. The purpose of our research was to compare the methodological and reporting quality of original versus updated Cochrane SRs to determine whether updating had improved these two quality dimensions. Methods We identifed updated Cochrane SRs published in issue 4, 2002 of the Cochrane Library. We assessed the updated and original versions of the SRs using two instruments: the 10 item enhanced Overview Quality Assessment Questionnaire (OQAQ, and an 18-item reporting quality checklist and flow chart based upon the Quality of Reporting of Meta-analyses (QUOROM statement. At least two reviewers extracted data and assessed quality. We calculated the percentage (with a 95% confidence interval of 'yes' answers to each question. We calculated mean differences in percentage, 95% confidence intervals and p-values for each of the individual items and the overall methodological quality score of the updated and pre-updated versions using OQAQ. Results We assessed 53 SRs. There was no significant improvement in the global quality score of the OQAQ (mean difference 0.11 (-0.28; 0.70 p = 0.52. Updated reviews showed a significant improvement of 18.9 (7.2; 30.6 p Conclusion The overall quality of Cochrane SRs is fair-to-good. Although reporting quality improved on certain individual items there was no overall improvement seen with updating and methodological quality remained unchanged. Further improvement of quality of reporting is possible. There is room for improvement of methodological quality as well. Authors updating reviews should address identified methodological or reporting weaknesses. We recommend to give full attention to both quality domains when updating SRs.

  16. Improving the quality of EHR recording in primary care: a data quality feedback tool.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bij, S. van der; Khan, N.; Veen, P. ten; Bakker, D.H. de; Verheij, R.A.


    Objective Electronic health record (EHR) data are used to exchange information among health care providers. For this purpose, the quality of the data is essential. We developed a data quality feedback tool that evaluates differences in EHR data quality among practices and software packages as part o

  17. The ‘Alternative Quality Contract’ in Massachusetts, Based on Global Budgets, Lowered Medical Spending and Improved Quality (United States)

    Song, Zirui; Safran, Dana Gelb; Landon, Bruce E.; Landrum, Mary Beth; He, Yulei; Mechanic, Robert E.; Day, Matthew P.; Chernew, Michael E.


    Seven provider organizations in Massachusetts entered the Blue Cross Blue Shield Alternative Quality Contract in 2009, followed by four more organizations in 2010. This contract, based on a global budget and pay-for-performance for achieving certain quality benchmarks, places providers at risk for excessive spending and rewards them for quality, similar to the new Pioneer Accountable Care Organizations in Medicare. We analyzed changes in spending and quality associated with the Alternative Quality Contract and found that the rate of increase in spending slowed compared to control groups. Overall, participation in the contract over two years led to a savings of 3.3% (1.9% in year-1, 3.3% in year-2) compared to spending in groups not participating in the contract. The savings were even higher for groups whose previous experience had been only in fee-for-service contracting. Such groups’ quarterly savings over two years averaged 8.2% (6.3% in year-1, 9.9% in year-2). Quality of care also improved within organizations participating in the Alternative Quality Contract compared to control organizations in both years. Chronic care management, adult preventive care, and pediatric care improved from year 1 to year 2 within the contracting groups. These results suggest that global budgets coupled with pay-for-performance can begin to slow the underlying growth in medical spending while improving quality. PMID:22786651

  18. Measuring data quality for ongoing improvement a data quality assessment framework

    CERN Document Server

    Sebastian-Coleman, Laura


    The Data Quality Assessment Framework shows you how to measure and monitor data quality, ensuring quality over time. You'll start with general concepts of measurement and work your way through a detailed framework of more than three dozen measurement types related to five objective dimensions of quality: completeness, timeliness, consistency, validity, and integrity. Ongoing measurement, rather than one time activities will help your organization reach a new level of data quality. This plain-language approach to measuring data can be understood by both business and IT and provides pra

  19. Meeting Proceedings: Recommendations for Improved Acute Pain Services: Canadian Collaborative Acute Pain Initiative

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David H Goldstein


    Full Text Available The Canadian Collaborative Acute Pain Initiative, established in 2002, is a voluntary, multidisciplinary consortium of acute pain health professionals from across Canada whose goal is to improve acute pain management through discussion and consensus. The group met in January 2002 to define strategic areas related to the treatment of acute pain. The areas identified were: the definition of pain; the epidemiology of pain; the concept of an 'ideal' acute pain management service; education; therapeutic options; symptom management; and research and safety. In November 2002, a second meeting was held to develop objectives and recommendations for the management of acute pain based on the defined areas. The outcome of these discussions is summarized in this paper.

  20. Relationship between sustainable development initiatives and improved company financial performance: A South African perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Darelle Groenewald


    Full Text Available Orientation: Companies are under ever-increasing pressure from both internal and external stakeholders to consider the environmental and social impacts of their operations and to mitigate these impacts. This necessitates an investigation into the effect of sustainability initiatives on the financial performance (FP of a company.Research purpose: The study analysed the relationship between sustainability performance and FP in South African listed companies.Motivation for the study: Some South African listed companies acknowledge in their sustainability reports that there is a link between sustainability development and long-term shareholder value. This implies that FP is linked to sustainable development performance. This relationship has not been researched for South African listed companies and therefore needs to be investigated.Research design, approach and method: A similar research method was used as for an international study. Forty-five listed South African companies were selected as the sample. Their sustainable development reports were used for analysis. Data were analysed with the use of content and a canonical correlation analysis.Main findings: The results of the study revealed that an overall positive relationship exists between sustainability performance and FP. Practical implications: South African companies that have a high involvement and focus on specific sustainable development initiatives that are integrated into overall sustainable development strategy can deliver improved FP for the organisation and deliver long-term value to its shareholders.Contribution: Six sustainable development aspects were found to be significantly correlated with improved FP and if incorporated into a company’s sustainable development strategy can lead to increased successes.

  1. 42 CFR 403.732 - Condition of participation: Quality assessment and performance improvement. (United States)


    ...) Inform all patients, in writing, of the scope and responsibilities of the quality assessment and... 42 Public Health 2 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Condition of participation: Quality assessment and... participation: Quality assessment and performance improvement. The RNHCI must develop, implement, and maintain...

  2. Improvement of baking quality traits through a diverse soft winter wheat population (United States)

    Breeding baking quality improvements into soft winter wheat (SWW) entails crossing lines based on quality traits, assessing new lines, and repeating several times as little is known about the genetics of these traits. Previous research on SWW baking quality focused on quantitative trait locus and ge...

  3. Contemporary Technologies to Improve the Quality of Education When Training Teachers (United States)

    Sibgatullina, Alfiya


    The article considers contemporary technologies to improve the quality of teachers' education (as exemplified by the training of foreign language teachers). The author presents analysis of the "quality of education" concept, proposes and analyzes the criteria for assessing the quality of education of future foreign language teachers.…

  4. Health-related quality of life in different stages of chronic kidney disease and at initiation of dialysis treatment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pagels Agneta A


    Full Text Available Abstract Objectives To evaluate health-related quality of life (HRQoL in patients in different stages of chronic kidney disease (CKD up to initiation of dialysis treatment and to explore possible correlating and influencing factors. Methods Cross-sectional design with 535 patients in CKD stages 2–5 and 55 controls assessed for HRQoL through SF-36 together with biomarkers. Results All HRQoL dimensions deteriorated significantly with CKD stages with the lowest scores in CKD 5. The largest differences between the patient groups were seen in ‘physical functioning’, ‘role physical’, ‘general health’ and in physical summary scores (PCS. The smallest disparities were seen in mental health and pain. Patients in CKD stages 2–3 showed significantly decreased HRQoL compared to matched controls, with differences of large magnitude - effect size (ES ≥ .80 - in ‘general health’ and PCS. Patients in CDK 4 demonstrated deteriorated scores with a large magnitude in ‘physical function’, ‘general health’ and PCS compared to the patients in CKD 2–3. Patients in CKD 5 demonstrated deteriorated scores with a medium sized magnitude (ES 0.5 – 0.79 in ‘role emotional’ and mental summary scores compared to the patients in CKD 4. Glomerular filtration rate Conclusions Having CKD implies impaired HRQoL, also in earlier stages of the disease. At the time for dialysis initiation HRQoL is substantially deteriorated. Co-existing conditions, such as inflammation and cardiovascular disease seem to be powerful predictors of impaired HRQoL in patients with CKD. Within routine renal care, strategies to improve function and well-being considering the management of co-existing conditions like inflammation and CVD need to be developed.

  5. Initial Characterization and Water Quality Assessment of Stream Landscapes in Northern Mongolia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jürgen Hofmann


    Full Text Available A comprehensive monitoring project (2006–2013 provided data on hydrology, hydromorphology, climatology, water physico-chemistry, sedimentology, macroinvertebrate community and fish diversity in the Kharaa River basin in northern Mongolia, thus enabling, for the first time, a detailed characterization of the stream landscapes. Surface waters were categorized into separate “water bodies” according to their identifiable abiotic and biocoenotic features, subsequently creating the smallest management sub-units within the river basin. Following the approach of the European Water Framework Directive (EC-WFD, in order to obtain a good ecological status (GES, four clearly identifiable water bodies in the Kharaa River main channel and seven water bodies consisting of the basin’s tributaries were delineated. The type-specific undisturbed reference state of various aquatic ecosystems was identified in the assessment and used to set standards for restoration goals. With regards to water quality and quantity, the upper reaches of the Kharaa River basin in the Khentii Mountains were classified as having a “good” ecological and chemical status. Compared with these natural reference conditions in the upper reaches, the initial risk assessment identified several “hot spot” regions with impacted water bodies in the middle and lower basin. Subsequently, the affected water bodies are at risk of not obtaining a level of good ecological and/or chemical status for surface waters. Finally, a matrix of cause-response relationships and stressor complexes has been developed and is presented here. The applicability of management approaches is discussed to better foster the development of a sustainable river basin management plan. The application of natural references states offers a sound scientific base to assess the impact of anthropogenic activities across the Kharaa River basin.

  6. A Value Management Approach to Improving Quality (ICP/JOU-05-00825)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    James R. Wixson; Howard Stromberg (Because he has an NT Account)


    In October 2001, the Department of Energy’s, Office of Price-Anderson Enforcement determined that the continuous improvement aspect of the INEEL Quality Assurance Program was inadequate. At the request of the INEEL Senior Management, a Quality Assurance Operations (QAO) Task Team was identified and requested to review the INEEL practices to determine whether the INEEL was performing the activities that are required for Quality Implementation. The team consisted of INEEL managers from Operations, Quality Assurance, Document and Records Management, Construction Services, Radiological Control, and Engineering. FAST modeling combined with other analytical techniques were used to identify areas for improvement and resolve the issues related to inadequate continuous improvement efforts.


    EPA is currently revising its quality-related policies for soliitations and contracts. This is a result of changes to the Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR), new flexibility in contracting procedures such as simplified acquisition, and new type4s of contracting such as perform...

  8. Improving quality of life in patients with hidradenitis suppurativa

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dufour, D.N.; Esmann, S.; Jemec, G.B.


    Hidradenitis suppurativa is a chronic recurrent inflammatory skin disease with abscess formation and scarring predominantly in the inverse areas. The disease is often difficult to treat and patients experience a decreased quality of life (QoL) and related psychosocial morbidity. Current knowledge...

  9. Provide good air quality for people and improve their productivity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fanger, Povl Ole


    Three recent independent studies have documented that the quality of indoor air has a significant and positive influence on the productivity of office workers. A combined analysis of the results of the three studies shows a significant relationship between productivity and perceived indoor air qu...

  10. Personal informatics in practice: Improving quality of life through data

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Li, Ian; Medynskiy, Yevgeniy; Froehlich, Jon


    of personal informatics applications poses new challenges for human-computer interaction and creates opportunities for applications in various domains related to quality of life, such as fitness, nutrition, wellness, mental health, and sustainability. This workshop will continue the conversations from the CHI...

  11. Building Quality Relationships with Principals to Improve Organizational Communications (United States)

    Albertson, Janelle


    When it comes to keeping an organization on the cutting edge, there is one thing that effective leaders cannot afford to neglect--and that is relationships. To support a quality public relations program in school districts, one of the most important relationships to cultivate is that with building principals. Talk to any seasoned school public…

  12. HR Manager Leadership in Quality Improvement in a College Environment (United States)

    Sharabi, Moshe


    Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to present the influence of the human resource (HR) manager on the quality of service in an academic college, and the human resource management (HRM) outcomes of the process. Design/methodology/approach: The paper relates to a customer satisfaction survey. More than 120 questionnaires were completed by the…

  13. Measuring Performance Excellence: Key Performance Indicators for Institutions Accepted into the Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP) (United States)

    Ballard, Paul J.


    Given growing interest in accountability and outcomes, the North Central Association's Higher Learning Commission developed a new path for accreditation, the Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP). The goal is to infuse continuous improvement and quality in the culture of higher education, and to blend traditional accreditation with the…

  14. Short and long term improvements in quality of chronic care delivery predict program sustainability

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    J.M. Cramm (Jane); A.P. Nieboer (Anna)


    markdownabstractEmpirical evidence on sustainability of programs that improve the quality of care delivery over time is lacking. Therefore, this study aims to identify the predictive role of short and long term improvements in quality of chronic care delivery on program sustainability. In this lon

  15. Improving the Quality of Services in Residential Treatment Facilities: A Strength-Based Consultative Review Process (United States)

    Pavkov, Thomas W.; Lourie, Ira S.; Hug, Richard W.; Negash, Sesen


    This descriptive case study reports on the positive impact of a consultative review methodology used to conduct quality assurance reviews as part of the Residential Treatment Center Evaluation Project. The study details improvement in the quality of services provided to youth in unmonitored residential treatment facilities. Improvements were…

  16. Training Psychiatry Residents in Quality Improvement: An Integrated, Year-Long Curriculum (United States)

    Arbuckle, Melissa R.; Weinberg, Michael; Cabaniss, Deborah L.; Kistler; Susan C.; Isaacs, Abby J.; Sederer, Lloyd I.; Essock, Susan M.


    Objective: The authors describe a curriculum for psychiatry residents in Quality Improvement (QI) methodology. Methods: All PGY3 residents (N=12) participated in a QI curriculum that included a year-long group project. Knowledge and attitudes were assessed before and after the curriculum, using a modified Quality Improvement Knowledge Assessment…

  17. Coordination mechanisms for quality improvement and market access in Ethiopian potato value chains

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Abebe, G.K.


      Market access for smallholders in developing countries often requires the improvement of product quality. As products are traded in value chains, quality improvement entails the coordination of activities and decisions by all actors in the chain. Thus, enhancing smallholders’ commercia

  18. Impact of Targeted Ocean Observations for Improving Ocean Model Initialization for Coupled Hurricane Forecasting (United States)

    Halliwell, G. R.; Srinivasan, A.; Kourafalou, V. H.; Yang, H.; Le Henaff, M.; Atlas, R. M.


    The accuracy of hurricane intensity forecasts produced by coupled forecast models is influenced by errors and biases in SST forecasts produced by the ocean model component and the resulting impact on the enthalpy flux from ocean to atmosphere that powers the storm. Errors and biases in fields used to initialize the ocean model seriously degrade SST forecast accuracy. One strategy for improving ocean model initialization is to design a targeted observing program using airplanes and in-situ devices such as floats and drifters so that assimilation of the additional data substantially reduces errors in the ocean analysis system that provides the initial fields. Given the complexity and expense of obtaining these additional observations, observing system design methods such as OSSEs are attractive for designing efficient observing strategies. A new fraternal-twin ocean OSSE system based on the HYbrid Coordinate Ocean Model (HYCOM) is used to assess the impact of targeted ocean profiles observed by hurricane research aircraft, and also by in-situ float and drifter deployments, on reducing errors in initial ocean fields. A 0.04-degree HYCOM simulation of the Gulf of Mexico is evaluated as the nature run by determining that important ocean circulation features such as the Loop Current and synoptic cyclones and anticyclones are realistically simulated. The data-assimilation system is run on a 0.08-degree HYCOM mesh with substantially different model configuration than the nature run, and it uses a new ENsemble Kalman Filter (ENKF) algorithm optimized for the ocean model's hybrid vertical coordinates. The OSSE system is evaluated and calibrated by first running Observing System Experiments (OSEs) to evaluate existing observing systems, specifically quantifying the impact of assimilating more than one satellite altimeter, and also the impact of assimilating targeted ocean profiles taken by the NOAA WP-3D hurricane research aircraft in the Gulf of Mexico during the Deepwater

  19. Continuous quality improvement in acute health care: creating a holistic and integrated approach. (United States)

    Sewell, N


    Reviews the range of quality activity in a National Health Service hospital trust, using a staff questionnaire survey, self-assessment against the Baldrige Quality Award criteria, and the application of the SERVQUAL approach to service quality assessment. Reviews the acute health care quality programme literature. Finds that there are needs for greater integration of quality effort, to engage with patients in a more meaningful manner, and to achieve greater commitment and involvement from clinicians and managers. Identifies lack of time and resources as a major barrier to greater application of quality programmes. Explores ways of developing a more holistic and integrated programme of quality improvement. Describes the creation and implementation of a model for continuous improvement in health care quality.

  20. Perfecting the Frankenstein Approach: Improved asymptotically matched initial data for non-spinning black hole binaries (United States)

    Yunes, Nicolas; Tichy, Wolfgang


    The accuracy of gravitational wave templates produced by numerical simulations is partially determined by the initial data chosen. A promising method to construct accurate data employs asymptotic matching to construct an approximate global 4-metric. In this talk, we will apply this method to a binary system of non-spinning black holes and discuss improvements. A global metric can be constructed by asymptotically matching two tidally perturbed Schwarzschild metrics in isotropic coordinates valid near each hole to an ADMTT post-Newtonian metric valid far from them. As a result, adjacent metrics agree in the matching region up to uncontrolled remainders in the approximations. We build a smooth global 4-metric with transition functions, carefully constructed to avoid introducing errors larger than those in the approximations. The main improvement arises by using metrics in similar coordinates before performing the matching. This similarity leads to adjacent metrics that are similar even near the horizons, thus allowing for a smoother transition and constraint violations. We also construct a map that takes this metric to Kerr-Schild coordinates near each hole.