Framework of care: communicating the structure and processes of care

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Abstract

Aim:

This article attempts to present a ‘macro view’ of the role and nature of an organization's Framework of Care (FrOC). This ‘view’ arises from a critical reflection on the available literature and the combined professional experience of the authors, who have worked in a variety of healthcare systems and settings in Australia, North America, United Kingdom, and the Middle East.

Background:

FrOC can be defined as the systems and processes within an organization that structure the delivery of care. These systems and processes are made evident in a series of documents, such as the Mission and Vision statement, Policies and Procedures, Standards of Care, Clinical Practice Guidelines, Clinical Pathways, and Protocols. These frameworks can provide structure for important organizational activities such as clinical audits, quality management and clinical information system (CIS) ‘decision support’, thereby supporting clinicians in their efforts to deliver high-quality, evidence-based care. How a healthcare organization structures its systems and processes of care directly impacts the patient and caregiver experience – made evident in patient and staff satisfaction with the services provided.

Recommendations:

Mapping out and understanding an organization's FrOC is a critical first step for interprofessional teams attempting to implement evidence into practice and/or accreditation teams and expert consultants critiquing the performance of an organization.

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Summary statement

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