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Improving healthcare quality in Europe

Characteristics, effectiveness and implementation of different strategies

Health Policy Series, No. 53

Editors: Reinhard Busse, Niek Klazinga, Dimitra Panteli, and Wilm Quentin.

Copenhagen (Denmark): European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies; .
ISBN-13: 9789289051750

Abstract

Quality improvement initiatives take many forms, from the creation of standards for health professionals, health technologies and health facilities, to audit and feedback, and from fostering a patient safety culture to public reporting and paying for quality. For policymakers who struggle to decide which initiatives to prioritise for investment, understanding the potential of different quality strategies in their unique settings is key.

This volume, developed by the Observatory together with OECD, provides an overall conceptual framework for understanding and applying strategies aimed at improving quality of care. Crucially, it summarizes available evidence on different quality strategies and provides recommendations for their implementation. This book is intended to help policy-makers to understand concepts of quality and to support them to evaluate single strategies and combinations of strategies.

Quality of care is a political priority and an important contributor to population health. This book acknowledges that “quality of care” is a broadly defined concept, and that it is often unclear how quality improvement strategies fit within a health system, and what their particular contribution can be. This volume elucidates the concepts behind multiple elements of quality in healthcare policy (including definitions of quality, its dimensions, related activities, and targets), quality measurement and governance and situates it all in the wider context of health systems research. By so doing, this book is designed to help policy-makers prioritize and align different quality initiatives and to achieve a comprehensive approach to quality improvement.

Contents

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The European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies supports and promotes evidence-based health policy-making through comprehensive and rigorous analysis of health systems in Europe. It brings together a wide range of policy-makers, academics and practitioners to analyse trends in health reform, drawing on experience from across Europe to illuminate policy issues.

The Observatory is a partnership hosted by the WHO Regional Office for Europe, which includes other international organizations (the European Commission, the World Bank); national and regional governments (Austria, Belgium, Finland, Ireland, Norway, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the Veneto Region of Italy); other health system organizations (the French National Union of Health Insurance Funds (UNCAM), the Health Foundation); and academia (the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) and the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM)). The Observatory has a secretariat in Brussels and it has hubs in London (at LSE and LSHTM) and at the Technical University of Berlin.

All rights reserved. The European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies welcomes requests for permission to reproduce or translate its publications, in part or in full.

Address requests about publications to: Publications, WHO Regional Office for Europe, UN City, Marmorvej 51, DK-2100 Copenhagen Ø, Denmark

Alternatively, complete an online request form for documentation, health information, or for permission to quote or translate, on the Regional Office web site (http://www.euro.who.int/pubrequest).

The designations employed and the presentation of the material in this publication do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries. Indeed, this document, as well as any data and map included herein, is without prejudice to the status of or sovereignty over any territory, to the delimitation of international frontiers and boundaries and to the name of any territory, city or area. Dotted lines on maps represent approximate border lines for which there may not yet be full agreement.

The mention of specific companies or of certain manufacturers’ products does not imply that they are endorsed or recommended by the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies or OECD in preference to others of a similar nature that are not mentioned. Errors and omissions excepted, the names of proprietary products are distinguished by initial capital letters.

All reasonable precautions have been taken by the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies to verify the information contained in this publication. However, the published material is being distributed without warranty of any kind, either express or implied. The responsibility for the interpretation and use of the material lies with the reader. In no event shall the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies be liable for damages arising from its use. The opinions expressed and arguments employed herein are solely those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official views of the OECD or of its member countries or the decisions or the stated policies of the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies or any of its partners.

OECD ISBN 978 92 648 0590 3

Printed in the United Kingdom

© World Health Organization (acting as the host organization for, and secretariat of, the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies) and OECD (2019)
Bookshelf ID: NBK549276PMID: 31721544

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