Development and evaluation of an information system for quality assurance

Philip, I., Goddard, A., Connell, N.A.D., Metcalfe, A., Tse, V. and Bray, J. (1994) Development and evaluation of an information system for quality assurance Age and Ageing, 23, (2), pp. 150-153. (doi:10.1093/ageing/23.2.150).


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The aim of this study was to develop and evaluate an information system for monitoring impact of acute hospital care on health status of elderly patients, burden on carers, and consumer satisfaction with care. The study was undertaken on four acute care wards of an elderly care unit of a teaching hospital. We used a consensus-building process to achieve within-and-between-team convergence of policy and practice in the use of structured assessments on three wards, with parallel data collection by a research nurse on one ward. We describe the changes to our working practices, the costs of data collection, staff attitudes to the system and the assessment instruments, using 5-point Likert Scales, with additional in-depth interviews with senior staff for their attitudes to the system.

We found that only nursing staff were able to change their practice. On admission, it was feasible to undertake functional assessment of activities of daily living (ADL), depression, perceived life quality and carer strain. Discharge assessment was only feasible for ADL. Other discharge assessments and follow-up assessments including consumer satisfaction interviews required audit assistant support. The total annual cost per ward was £6,225 for the adopted system, or £6,455 to incorporate follow-up assessments by audit assistant in a random sample of 50 patients. Staff attitudes to the system were positive, especially for use of the Relatives' Stress Scale, and for the value of follow-up interviews. We conclude that the participatory approach to the introduction of the information system produced a system which was perceived to be beneficial for patient care. The system has potential for measuring the outcomes of care, but greater efficiency is required before the system can be regarded as cost-effective.

Item Type: Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi:10.1093/ageing/23.2.150
ISSNs: 0002-0729 (print)

ePrint ID: 36258
Date :
Date Event
March 1994Published
Date Deposited: 08 Mar 2007
Last Modified: 16 Apr 2017 22:06
Further Information:Google Scholar

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