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Nursing

The Statewide Quality Advisory Committee Meeting

The Health Commissioner is required to establish a set of standardized quality measures for those in the healthcare industry across the state of Minnesota. These quality measures are utilized for public reporting. In line with this, the Minnesota Statewide Quality Advisory Committee routinely meets to recommend and propose sets of quality measures to health care facilities and centers.  In the meeting conducted last February 25, 2013, the Chairman led a discussion regarding the SQAC’s mission statement. One critical element of the mission statement that was discussed was the term “alignment”. Several members expressed their concern as they notice a lack of standardization on the quality measures in effect. Healthcare providers are often burdened with complex reporting requirements and this complexity is another issue discussed within the meeting. Similarly, the mission statement of the SQAC highlights its capacity to act as an advisor and it also requires standard quality measures to be reported uniformly amongst healthcare providers and institutions. On another note, one committee member, Dolores Mitchell, stated that there is no direct correlation between quality measures alignment and the improved health status of the people in Massachusetts. This is reiterated by another committee member, Dana Gelb Safran, who stated that affordable and quality care have the most impact on the residents’ health status and not merely the collection of standard quality measures.

Quality of care is indeed becoming one of the leading objective and aim of health care providers globally. In fact the Institute of Medicine has put together a framework that aims to improve the quality of care received by the entire country through a series of phases. The first phase of this framework involves understanding the gravity of the quality problem. The second phase consists of laying out the ideal health care system and providing a comparison between the ideal system and the current one. The third phase involves planning and stating in concrete terms the envisioned health care system (IOM 2009). Since the time of Florence Nightingale, quality patient care has been a central theme in the nursing profession. According to Foley (2004), the health and well being of nurses must also be ensured so that quality patient care is not compromised and so as to ensure that there are an adequate number of nurses in a given unit. In the field of Nursing, this framework can also be utilized in order to improve the care rendered by nurses to patients and to ensure the health and well-being of nurses. Thus, it is critical that people understand the gravity of workplace related injury and organizations should work together in order to ensure the safety needs of nurses.  Today, it is evident that the occupational safety of health care workers is given its due focus.

The Statewide Quality Advisory Committee is certainly a step in the right direction to achieve the primary goals and objectives in the health industry. The committee is clearly working to determine common goals and identify their priorities. There is clear and open dialogue within the members of the committee, which is critical as this exchange of information enables each member to express their own thoughts and opinions about issues within the industry. Furthermore, the committee is able to explore other avenues and alternative options in finding a solution to identified problems and by collaborating with each member in order to achieve identified goals and objectives.

References

Foley, M. (2004). Caring for Those Who Care: A Tribute to Nurses and Their Safety. Online Journal of Issues in Nursing. Vol. 9 No. 3, Manuscript 1. Retrieved from www.nursingworld.org/MainMenuCategories/ANAMarketplace/ANAPeriodicals/OJIN/TableofContents/Volume92004/No3Sept04/NurseSafetyOverview.aspx

Institute of Medicine (2009). Crossing the Quality Chasm: The IOM Health Care Quality Initiative. Retrieved from http://www.iom.edu/CMS/8089.aspx/