Total quality management in the hospital setting

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Abstract

With the increasing demands on hospitals for improved quality and lower costs, hospitals have been forced to reevaluate their manner of operation and quality assurance (QA) programs. Hospitals have been faced with customer dissatisfaction with services, escalating costs, intense competition, and reduced reimbursement for services. As a result, many hospitals have incorporated total quality management (TQM), also known as continuous quality improvement (CQI) and quality improvement (QI), to improve quality care and decrease costs. This article examines the concept of TQM, its rationale, and how it can be implemented in a hospital. A comparison of TQM and QA is made. Examples of hospital implementation of TQM and problems and issues associated with TQM in the hospital setting are explored.

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