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Accrediting Agencies and the Search for Quality in Health Care

  • Myrene McAninch

Abstract

In his book Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry into Values, Robert Pirsig (1974) wrote that Socrates made the following statement in 300 BC: “Quality isn’t method; it’s the goal toward which method is aimed.” This statement is as relevant and important today as it was when Socrates made it. In health care, the goal of providing quality patient care doesn’t change; the methods of attaining that goal or of determining whether that goal has been achieved do. The method of attaining quality patient care may vary from patient to patient, depending on the individual’s treatment plan, on the particular treatment system or approach taken (for example, a behavior modification or a psychoanalytic approach), or on the hospital wide or facilitywide quality-assurance programs. Methods change to improve the chances of attaining the goal. The process through which methods change is dynamic and ongoing, based on the identification of problems, the implementation of corrective action, and the achievement of improvement. As progress is made and objectives are met, the process improves, and its focus shifts to other areas in need of attention. This procedure goes on at the patient care level and, through a facility’s quality assurance program, at the management level.

Keywords

Quality Assurance Joint Commission Governing Body Professional Staff Quality Assurance Program 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Myrene McAninch
    • 1
  1. 1.Accreditation Program for Psychiatric FacilitiesJoint Commission on Accreditation of HospitalsChicagoUSA

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