Information Systems Frontiers

, Volume 14, Issue 1, pp 105–117 | Cite as

Knowledge-based clinical pathway for medical quality improvement

  • Hongqiao Yang
  • Weizi LiEmail author
  • Kecheng Liu
  • Junping Zhang


Clinical pathways have been adopted for various diseases in clinical departments for quality improvement as a result of standardization of medical activities in treatment process. Using knowledge-based decision support on the basis of clinical pathways is a promising strategy to improve medical quality effectively. However, the clinical pathway knowledge has not been fully integrated into treatment process and thus cannot provide comprehensive support to the actual work practice. Therefore this paper proposes a knowledge-based clinical pathway management method which contributes to make use of clinical knowledge to support and optimize medical practice. We have developed a knowledge-based clinical pathway management system to demonstrate how the clinical pathway knowledge comprehensively supports the treatment process. The experiences from the use of this system show that the treatment quality can be effectively improved by the extracted and classified clinical pathway knowledge, seamless integration of patient-specific clinical pathway recommendations with medical tasks and the evaluating pathway deviations for optimization.


Clinical pathway Quality improvement Knowledge-based system Decision support for pathway management Medical service quality 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hongqiao Yang
    • 1
  • Weizi Li
    • 2
    Email author
  • Kecheng Liu
    • 2
    • 3
  • Junping Zhang
    • 4
  1. 1.Hospital 309 of People’s Liberation ArmyBeijingChina
  2. 2.School of Management and EconomicsBeijing Institute of TechnologyBeijingChina
  3. 3.Informatics Research CentreUniversity of ReadingReadingUK
  4. 4.Carefx CorporationScottsdaleUSA

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