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IHI White Papers
IHI’s Innovation Series white papers are designed to share the problems IHI is working to address; the ideas, changes, and methods we are developing and testing to help organizations make breakthrough improvements; and early results where they exist.
The Scottish Improvement Journey: A Nationwide Approach to Improvement
Learn about Scotland’s 10-year effort to apply quality improvement on a national scale to improve patient safety, including an in-depth review of the successful Scottish Patient Safety Programme, and further QI efforts that spread across Scotland into new social policy areas such as children’s services, education, and justice.
Lessons in Leadership for Improvement: Kaiser Permanente’s Improvement Journey Over 10 Years
Kaiser Permanente (KP) has achieved impressive improvements in quality of care over the past decade — a testament to their engaged and effective leadership and staff, and also due in part to a unique 10-plus-year collaboration with the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) that accelerated improvement at KP, greatly informed IHI’s own learning, and helped KP build system-wide capacity for improvement.
This site from the Washington Home Center for Palliative Care Studies offers support and resources to hospitals, nursing homes, health systems, hospices, and other organizations that serve individuals nearing the end of life and their families.
A Quality Improvement Model for the Rapid Scale-up of a Program to Prevent Mother-to-Child HIV Transmission in South Africa
This article describes how a group of NGOs and government partners jointly developed the "Accelerated Plan" (A-Plan) to successfully improve services at health care facilities in South Africa to prevent mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) of HIV.
Using Quality Improvement Methods to Test and Scale Up a New National Policy on Early Post-natal Care in Ghana
This initiative demonstrates the utility of a quality improvement (QI) approach in testing, implementing, and subsequent scaling up a national policy for early post-natal care in a resource-constrained setting, and provides a model to accelerate the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals in Ghana and other resource-poor countries.
National CAHPS Benchmarking Database (NCBD)
The National CAHPS Benchmarking Database (NCBD) is the national warehouse of data collected by the CAHPS patient surveys to assess patient care.
How to Improve
Learn about the fundamentals of the Model for Improvement and testing changes on a small scale using Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) cycles.
Ensuring Healthcare Improvements Stick
This article describes six management principles, leadership practices, core competencies, and mental models that all play a role in generating and sustaining improvement.
Profiles in Improvement: Jennifer Lenoci-Edwards, RN, MPH, IHI Director, Patient Safety
In this profile, Jennifer Lenoci-Edwards, IHI Director of Patient Safety, talks about the experiences that shaped her passion and dedication to improving safety, and the current focus of IHI's work in patient safety, which includes safety across the continuum of care, engaging patients in safety efforts, and supporting health care teams in improving system reliability and enhancing their joy in work.
10 IHI Innovations to Improve Health and Health Care
This curated publication highlights 10 ideas that have emerged from IHI's systematic 90-day innovation approach, including reflections on the Triple Aim, the concept of a health care Campaign, the Breakthrough Series Collaborative model, and other frameworks and fresh thinking that have been replicated around the world.
Peer Review and Quality Management: Are They Compatible?
Donald Berwick addresses the misunderstanding that is developing among health care organizations regarding the appropriate role of classical forms of quality assurance (QA) in the new wave of quality management.
The business case for tobacco cessation programs: A case study
In 1992 Group Health Cooperative made tobacco cessation a top priority of its preventive care program.
WIHI: The Meaningful Methodology of Patient- and Family-Centered Care
April 22, 2010 | Learn how a patient- and family-centered care program that started off in a hospital’s orthopaedic surgery department is now being spread to several sites throughout a health system.
WIHI: Improving Health Care: The Global View
July 7, 2011 | Health care improvement has become a global endeavor and many nations are tackling similar issues. Three leading experts talk about the richness of improvement ideas and innovations from around the world, and how health systems in different countries can learn from each other.
WIHI: Large-Scale Change Across a Country: Learning from Scotland
June 20, 2013 | During this WIHI some of the top leadership from IHI, including Derek Feeley, the Chief Executive of NHS Scotland and incoming Executive Vice President at IHI, offer perspective on Scotland's success in many areas of patient safety and the corresponding results.
Does a Quality Improvement Campaign Accelerate Take-up of New Evidence? IHI’s Project JOINTS
IHI’s Project JOINTS initiative engaged a network of state-based organizations and professionals in a six-month QI campaign to promote adherence to three evidence-based practices to reduce surgical site infection (SSI) after joint replacement.
Resources for Public Health Quality Improvement
A collection of resources to help public health leaders and practitioners apply quality improvement to programs and processes, with the ultimate goal of saving lives, cutting costs, and getting better results.
10 MORE Powerful Ideas for Improving Patient Care
Authors Maureen Bisognano and Paul Plsek — both frontline figures in the improvement and innovation field — share concepts in enhancing care and service delivery that have been developed and successfully implemented in outpatient as well as inpatient settings of actual health care organizations.
Science of Improvement: Spreading Changes
After successful implementation of a change or package of changes for a pilot population or an entire unit, the team can spread the changes to other parts of the organization or in other organizations.
Can a Quality Improvement Project Impact Maternal and Child Health Outcomes at Scale in Northern Ghana?
This paper discusses the impact of a scale-up phase of Project Fives Alive! to improve maternal and child health outcomes, which used quality improvement methods to identify barriers to care and care-seeking, and then identify, test, implement, and scale up simple and low-cost local solutions to address the barriers. The project and this approach demonstrated improved outcomes at scale.
IHI "Seven Spreadly Sins"
Improvement teams often make some common missteps when it comes to successfully sharing and spreading improvement ideas in their organizations. IHI's "Seven Spreadly Sins" infographic give teams practical tips for overcoming challenges that impede successful spread.
Promising Care: How We Can Rescue Health Care by Improving It
This book collects 16 landmark speeches given by Donald M. Berwick (including all of his speeches delivered at IHI’s annual National Forum on Quality Improvement in Health Care from 2003 to 2012) that clearly show why our medical systems don’t reliably contribute to our overall health. Berwick offers a vision for making our systems better — safer, more effective, more efficient, and more humane.
National Institute for Children's Health Quality
The National Institute for Children's Health Quality seeks to make dramatic improvements in the quality of care for children and adolescents.
A Framework for Scaling Up Health Interventions: Lessons from Large-Scale Improvement Initiatives in Africa
This article details a sequence of four steps for taking a health intervention to full scale, properties that facilitate adoption of the new ideas, and the infrastructure required to support the scale-up. Two case studies present national-scale initiatives in Ghana and South Africa that used early iterations of this framework to scale up evidence-based interventions to improve maternal and child health.