Exceptional care delivery is shaped by multiple domains, an idea first shared in the Institute of Medicine’s (IOM) “Crossing the Quality Chasm” report. One domain, safety, was an urgent issue and given priority attention. Now children’s hospitals are considering how to expand their focus and redesign their care delivery systems for better outcomes. This exploration includes how to best mitigate the effects of race and socioeconomic factors on health and health care outcomes, but it is just one piece of the puzzle.
The six domains of health care quality
The IOM’s STEEEP framework for quality health care conceptualizes quality with six domains:
- Safe: Avoiding harm to patients from the care that is intended to help them.
- Timely: Reducing waits and sometimes harmful delays for both those who receive and those who give care.
- Effective: Providing services based on scientific knowledge to all who could benefit and refraining from providing services to those not likely to benefit (avoiding underuse and misuse, respectively).
- Efficient: Avoiding waste, including waste of equipment, supplies, ideas, and energy.
- Equitable: Providing care that does not vary in quality because of personal characteristics such as gender, ethnicity, geographic location and socioeconomic status.
- Patient-centered: Providing care that is respectful of and responsive to individual patient preferences, needs and values and ensuring that patient values guide all clinical decisions.
Continued evolution in quality
Together, children’s hospitals are working to achieve improvement in health outcomes, experience and value for children and families. Children’s hospitals are rethinking their role in broader health issues, building upon foundational quality efforts and examining challenges and opportunities, digging deeper into areas that have historically been less of a focus but have relevance to a child’s overall health.
As they begin to shape the next generation of quality, Children’s Hospital Association is working with hospitals and health systems to support their initiatives and accelerate progress. Get involved in the conversation by joining online discussions dedicated to quality, registering for webinars and joining virtual and in-person meetings.
Children’s hospitals have a rich history of working together to improve children’s health care. From identifying and improving areas of potential harm to working together to reduce severe sepsis, CHA members learn from each other to make changes that influence outcomes for the children and families they serve.