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Qual Manag Health Care. 2006 Apr-Jun;15(2):104-15.

Reverse quality management: developing evidence-based best practices in health emergency management.

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1
Info-Lynk Consulting Services Inc., 8623 Granville Street, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. tim@infolynk.ca

Abstract

The British Columbia Ministry of Health's Framework for Core Functions in Public Health was the catalyst that inspired this review of best practices in health emergency management. The fieldwork was conducted in the fall of 2005 between hurricane Katrina and the South Asia earthquake. These tragedies, shown on 24/7 television news channels, provided an eyewitness account of disaster management, or lack of it, in our global village world. It is not enough to just have best practices in place. There has to be a governance structure that can be held accountable. This review of best practices lists actions in support of an emergency preparedness culture at the management, executive, and corporate/governance levels of the organization. The methodology adopted a future quality management approach of the emergency management process to identify the corresponding performance indictors that correlated with practices or sets of practices. Identifying best practice performance indictors needed to conduct a future quality management audit is described as reverse quality management. Best practices cannot be assessed as stand-alone criteria; they are influenced by organizational culture. The defining of best practices was influenced by doubt about defining a practice it is hoped will never be performed, medical staff involvement, leadership, and an appreciation of the resources required and how they need to be managed. Best practice benchmarks are seen as being related more to "measures" of performance defined locally and agreed on by 2 or more parties rather than to achieving industrial standards. Relating practices to performance indicators and then to benchmarks resulted in the development of a Health Emergency Management Best Practices Matrix that lists specific practice in the different phases of emergency management.

PMID:
16622359
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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