Improvement Science

The power of existing interventions is not matched by the power of health systems to deliver them to those in greatest need, in a comprehensive way, and on an adequate scale.

                                                                                                                                                             -- Margaret Chan, Director General, WHO

Despite an abundance of evidence-based guidelines and consensus on what should be done, many simple, high-impact interventions capable of saving lives and alleviating suffering are not reaching the people who most need them.
Model for Improvement

Adapted from Associates in Process Improvement, 1996

Much of this implementation gap is related to weak health systems and processes of care delivery. The USAID ASSIST Project is designed to address this challenge, achieving better health outcomes and strengthening health systems in USAID-assisted countries, through improvement science

Improvement science is the application of scientific methods to make processes and systems work better.  The fundamental concept of improvement science is that improvement requires change. If a system is not changed, it can only be expected to continue to achieve the same results. In order to achieve a different level of performance, changes must be made to that system in ways that permit it to produce better results.

An equally important concept is that while improvement requires change, not every change is an improvement. Because not every change makes care better, changes must be tested and studied to determine whether the change improves care quality.

This section of the ASSIST Knowledge Portal provides information on improvement methods and tools and resources for building capacity for improvement to help you make changes to improve your own system of care.

We also invite you to browse our database of improvement stories or submit your own story of how you have improved care. 

 

 

The Improving Quality (IQ) Game: a mobile app for learning improvement

Yesterday, 50 pregnant women came to your health care clinic but only seven received good quality care! The health workers in the clinic are overworked and don’t have all the equipment they need. Your job is to fix the problem so that all...

ISQua supplement on Salzburg Global Seminar Session 565—‘Better Health Care: how do we learn about improvement?’

A fundamental question for the field of healthcare improvement is the extent to which the results achieved can be attributed to the changes that were implemented and whether or not these changes are generalizable. Answering these questions...

FHI 360's Quality Improvement Handbook: A Guide for Enhancing the Performance of Health Care Systems

This handbook is a guide to enhancing the performance of health care systems using evidence-based models derived from improvement science. Primarily intended for program managers and technical staff members of FHI 360 projects, it may be...

The transformative power of simplicity

Sonali Vaid

Quality Improvement Consultant, WHO Collaborating Centre for Newborn Care at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi

What meditation can teach us about quality improvement

Our “Best 9” stories in 2017

Vicky Ramirez

Consultant, USAID ASSIST Project/URC

Looking back, 2017 was a great year for us at ASSIST. In 2017, we were featured in USAID’s Exposure; we collaborated with a number of partners to publish ICHC Blog Series, which was cross-posted on The Huffington Post; and we ran a blog series in honor of Health Worker Week. After our resources page, our blog was the most visited page on our website. In case you missed some of these highlights, we’ve put together our “Best 9” stories. These posts illustrate the stories behind the great work employed by our country teams, partners, and individuals. Let us know which story you loved the most!

Institutionalization and Sustainability of Donor-Funded Quality Assurance Initiatives: The Case of Honduras

Institutionalization and sustainability are important issues for any donor funded program as the effectiveness of the initiatives are usually expected to persist after the donor funding period has ended. This report develops a framework...

Reducing the gender-related immunization gap in two districts of Mopti Region in Mali

The USAID Applying Science to Strengthen and Improve Systems (ASSIST) Project works to improve health services quality and outcomes by strengthening the productivity and performance of the health workforce for a sustainable response. This...

HCAC Fourth Quality Health Care Conference 2017

Amman, Jordan

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