Defining Quality in Health Care and Measuring Quality in Surgery

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Quality in health care has been sluggish to adapt to the changing landscape, leading to lapses in the successful delivery of care. Consequently, quality of care has come under intense scrutiny in the past decade, resulting in the creation of various federally funded and nonprofit organizations aimed at assessing and implementing systematic quality improvements. In this article, the authors examine the evolution of quality in health care relative to established quality control measures in other sectors, different ways of assessing quality, and the current state of the health care system.

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