When Reading Quality Improvement Articles, Look for Quality Research

April 1, 2011 | Healthcare Risk, Quality, & Safety Guidance

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Critical appraisal of a quality improvement article is crucial when readers might use the article's findings as a basis for change within an organization, says a report in the November 24, 2010, Journal of the American Medical Association (Fan et al.). Such articles attempt to modify clinical practice and, in turn, patient outcomes, so they should be evaluated carefully and completely before any policy changes are considered as a result of their findings. The authors suggest that readers of quality improvement studies examine them for measurement of appropriate outcome, replication of the findings, and the likelihood of success outside the study setting.

The authors suggest looking at several factors when...

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