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Bundesgesundheitsblatt Gesundheitsforschung Gesundheitsschutz. 2008 May;51(5):558-64. doi: 10.1007/s00103-008-0528-3.

[Guidelines as a basis for future-oriented health care management].

[Article in German]

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Arztliches Zentrum für Qualität in der Medizin, Berlin, BRD.


Due to the highly divided structure of the German health care system, patients are usually cared for within sectors or along sectoral borders and not according to the ideal process of care. Often, as a result of this, individual working steps in health care are carried out parallel to each other in an uncoordinated fashion. The insufficient exchange of information and the lack of coordination of procedures between the involved members of the care process can lead to severe disruptions in the delivery of care. This creates problems like superfluous diagnostic and therapeutical interventions or a higher likelihood of mistakes, for example, when it comes to pharmacological therapy. With improved organization (communication, coordination and cooperation), optimization in the areas of quality and cost effectiveness can be expected. High-quality evidence-based guidelines or clinical pathways developed from evidence-based guidelines define ideal process sequences and requirements for structure, process and outcome quality. Thus, they can play a supporting role in the integration of medical care services in terms of organization and content. Hereby evidence-based quality indicators serve as tools for process supervision. Guideline-based Integrated Care Contracts pose an excellent opportunity for the implementation of guidelines. At the same time, integrated care based on high-quality guidelines can considerably contribute to improving the quality of medical health care.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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