Which Quality Improvement Tool is Best Suited to the Healthcare Industry? (2012)

TQM and Six Sigma in the Healthcare Industry Dissertation – It goes as an adage that development an improvements form the basis of a successful functioning of any branch of activity. The importance of quality improvement measures and programs has significantly increased lately due to rapid development of business and science and the consequently increased competition between enterprises.

This dissertation work focuses on studying the practical application of quality improvement methodologies in healthcare. The objective of the current research was to reveal the QI approaches, strategies and tools applied in medical corporations and their characteristics with the final purpose to find out the positive and negative sides of the qualitative improvement models practical application in this cultural environment and thus to adapt them for obtaining better results.

The necessity of it was promoted by the limited success of applying quality improvement programs was in the medical sector. The research was realized on the basis of twenty interviews of higher and middle medical stuff and discussing the chosen QI programs, their success factors and obstacles, and the overall assessment of the outcome.

The obtained information were later processed with the combination of qualitative and quantitative analysis methods; the general research approach being characterized as descriptive research design (qualitative approach) chosen for the research due to revealing much detailed information. In the result, it was found out that the most frequently implicated programs are Six Sigma (8), CQI and PDSA (5), TQM (5), and JCI standards (5).

Their introduction is triggered by a combination of internal (professional development of an establishment) and external (accreditation programs) factors. Six Sigma was most successful due to permeating the whole organization into the changes. The most important obstacles concerned lack of motivation and cultural and human-related factors (reluctance to change anything). Thus, the best way of applying QI programs lies in developing a coherent, clear and logical program adapted to the specificities of cultural and national environment and at the same time to the special features of service in general and this establishment in particular.

The received results allowed concluding that firstly, the results generally confirm the previously stated hypothesis that the application of QI methodologies in health service organizations is regulated and controlled by the branch specific factors (human-oriented ones in the first place). Secondly, the key QI elements of a medical unit include considering the specificities of the branch in general and of this particular organization, elaborating a clear and coherent working plan, and managing people’s habits and convictions.

These results suggest that before developing a quality improvement plan, one needs concentrate not only but also and foremost on the necessities and specificities of the given branch and the given organization. The performed research has big practical value due to revealing the underlying reasons and explanations of limited success and due to providing practice-based recommendations of applying and adapting QI programs.

  • 20,000 words – 62 pages in length
  • Outstanding use of literature
  • Good in depth analysis
  • Well written throughout
  • Ideal for MBA and operation management students

1 – Introduction
Quality and Healthcare
What is Quality?
Quality improvement in industry
Differences and similarities
Aims and research questions
Overview of the research design
Outline of Chapters

2 – Literature Review
Quality Improvement Approaches
Plan-Do-Study-Act Model
How to Apply PSDA in Healthcare Industry?
Collaborative Approach
Total Quality Management (TQM)
Basic Elements of TQM
Management Commitment and Leadership
Employee Involvement
Continuous Improvement
Supplier Quality Assurance and Management
Customer Focus
Education and Training
Does TQM Work?
Problem Applying TQM
Possible Reasons for TQM Failures
Continuous Quality Improvement
What is CQI?
Adoption of CQI for Use in Healthcare
Does CQI Work?
Outline of Approach
Underlying Philosophy
Underpinning Elements

3 – Comparison between TQM and Six Sigma
Six Sigma
The Difference between the TQM and Six Sigma Approach
Dimensions of Six Sigma and Differences to TQM
Comparison: Process Improvement
Six Sigma within firms Control System
The TQM and the Six Sigma View on Cost
Comparison of the Cultural Implementation
The Six Sigma Role System

4 – Empirical Study
Research Methodology
Research Approach
Data Collection Method
Ethical Issues

5 – Analysis of Data
Analysis of Data
Study Findings
Six Sigma
Review and Discussion of the Findings

6 – Conclusion and Recommendations


TQM and Six Sigma in the Healthcare Industry Dissertation
TQM and Six Sigma in the Healthcare Industry Dissertation

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