Week 1: What Is Quality?

Quality is a broad term that can mean different things in different contexts. The Quality improvement (QI) process is a systematic, formal approach to the analysis of performance and efforts to improve performance (Spath, 2018). The terms Quality Improvement, Performance Improvement and Continuous Improvement are often used interchangeably in healthcare. The goal of healthcare Quality Improvement is to improve processes that support patient care or improve patient outcomes. In this course, the Practice Experience Project and the Capstone Paper will focus on improving patient outcomes.

Data collection is the cornerstone of Quality Improvement. Collecting data identifies potential areas for improvement, and monitors the effectiveness of any changes. It is important to obtain baseline data before beginning a Quality Improvement project and to analyze results during and at the end of a project. Quality Improvement teams make decisions based on the analysis of the data.

A variety of approaches or Quality Improvement Models exist to collect, analyze data and test change. Some examples of quality improvement models are PDSA, PDCA, FOCUS PDCA, Lean, and Six Sigma. Each Quality Improvement model is discussed in detail in chapter five of the Spath (2018) course text.

Quality Improvement Tools are strategies that can help a quality improvement team understand, analyze, or communicate quality improvement efforts. Examples of Quality Improvement Tools include Run Charts, Pareto Charts, 5 why’s, Scatter and Fishbone Diagrams. Details and additional tools can be found in chapter six of the Spath (2018) text.

This week you explore definitions of quality and what it means in health care and in nursing. You consider the quality management activities of measurement, assessment, and improvement and how they are applied in your work setting or other practice setting. You also begin step one of your Capstone Paper—identifying a patient-centered practice problem in need of improvement that you have had experience with in your work or practice setting. You will develop this throughout the practice experience, and it will be the topic of the Capstone Paper. The practice problem identified in the practice experience discussion is the problem that will be presented in detail in the Capstone Paper and storyboard presentation.

Learning Objectives

Students will:

Develop a definition of quality

Apply definition of quality to work setting

Identify quality-improvement practice problems

Learning Resources

Note: To access this week’s required library resources, please click on the link to the Course Readings List, found in the Course Materials section of your Syllabus.

Required Readings

Spath, P. (2018). Introduction to healthcare quality management (3rd ed.). Chicago, IL: Health Administration Press.

Chapter 1, “Focus on Quality” (pp. 1–12)

Chapter 2, “Quality Management Building Blocks” (pp. 13–34)

Preview Chapter 3, “Measuring Performance” (pp. 43–46)

Yoder-Wise, P. S. (2019). Leading and managing in nursing (7th ed.). St. Louis, MO: Mosby.

Chapter 1, “Leading, Managing, and Following” (pp. 1-18)

Chapter 2, “Clinical Safety: The Core of Leading, Managing and Following” (pp. 19-31)

QP staff. (2010). Guru guide: Six thought leaders who changed the quality world forever. Quality Progress, 43(11), 14–21.

Document: Practice Experience Full Guide (PDF)

Document: Quality Improvement Storyboard Template (PPT)

Document: Capstone Paper Assignment Guides (Word Document)

Writing Resources

Document: Academic Writing Expectations Checklist Capstone Level

This checklist will help you self-assess your writing to see if it meets academic writing standards for this course.

Walden University. (<link is hidden> Walden templates: General templates: APA course paper template with advice (6th ed.). Retrieved September 26, 2016, from <link is hidden> />

Document: BSN Program Top Ten Citations and References (PDF)

Discussion: Defining Quality

As health care consumers, we all expect quality care and positive outcomes. It is important as professionals that we meet these demands of health care consumers. Consider the work of the major theorists you examined in this week’s Resources, and think about how these theories apply to your own experience as a health care customer and/or practitioner.

By Day 3

Post your definition of quality, and apply it to the work of one major quality theorist (<link is hidden> Donabedian, Juran, Deming, Triple Aim (IHI) – Berwick). Identify a practice problem that you have had some experience with as a customer or as a practitioner, and explain how eliminating wasteful practices could have improved the experience. Include how your definition of quality applies to that experience.

Support your response with references from the professional nursing literature. Your posts need to be written at the capstone level (see checklist).

Notes Initial Post: This should be a 3-paragraph (at least 350 words) response. Be sure to use evidence from the readings and include in-text citations. Utilize essay-level writing practice and skills, including the use of transitional material and organizational frames. Avoid quotes; paraphrase to incorporate evidence into your own writing. A reference list is required. Use the most current evidence (usually ≤ 5 years old). (Refer to AWE Checklist, Capstone)

By Day 7

Read two or more of your colleagues’ postings from the Discussion question.

Respond with a comment that asks for clarification, provides support for, or contributes additional information to two or more of your colleagues’ postings.

Post a Discussion entry on three different days of the week.

Submission and Grading Information

Grading Criteria

To access your rubric:

Week 1 Discussion Rubric

Post by Day 3 and Respond by Day 7

To participate in this Discussion:

Week 1 Discussion

Practice Experience: Identifying a Practice Problem in Need of Improvement

In this week’s Discussion, you shared your experiences with health care practice problems as a consumer and/or as a practitioner. Now, consider your current practice setting and think about something specific and relevant to your practice setting that you would like to see improved or changed. Interview a key leader in your practice setting who can confirm that your practice problem is one that should be addressed to enhance delivery or performance in the field. It is important to remember from the beginning that your practice problem must be measurable, and that you identify data that suggests a problem exists, and although this comes up more specifically in Week 2, it is important to consider this from the start.

This will be the problem discussed in your Practice Experience Project, Capstone Paper, and Storyboard.

Identify a measurable patient-centered practice problem related to quality or safety and relevant to your practice setting that you will also focus on in your Capstone Paper, and post a brief description of the problem and an explanation of why you selected it. Explain how the conversation you had with the key leader in your practice setting impacted your decision to address this particular practice problem. Be sure to support your practice problem with the literature that indicates the relevance of this problem for nursing practice. Provide evidence from your practice area and describe the data that is available.


Order your custom paper
Posted in Uncategorized

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes:

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>