What is quality improvement?

Quality improvement can be defined as ‘working together, using methods, tools, data measurement, curiosity and an open mindset to improve healthcare’ – the Health Foundation Quality Improvement Made Simple

It focuses on helping people cooperate in achieving the Institute of Medicine’s six aims for improvement in healthcare quality – to make healthcare safer, family-centred and more effective, efficient, equitable and timely.

Quality improvement approaches have the following in common - a cycle of improvement (problem definition, generating and testing ideas, measurement and learning) and a set of practical tools, involving stakeholders and recognising the importance of culture and leadership.

MINDSet Introduction to Quality Improvement in Mental Health provides a handy summary of the life cycle of an improvement project and describes some of the main improvement tools and techniques.