Choosing your measures
Measures (both quantitative and qualitative) are a critical part of QI. They are used to determine if a specific change leads to an improvement. Data for measures is plotted over time on what is known as a Statistical Process Control (SPC) chart. You can use the Life QI system to generate your SPC chart.
Three types of measures
You should use a balanced set of measures for all quality improvement projects. These are : outcomes measures, process measures, and balancing measures.
• Outcome measures: ‘Where are we ultimately going?’
For example; mortality rates, readmission rates, quality of life
• Balancing measures: ‘Are the changes we are making to one part of the system causing
problems in other parts of the system?’
For example, patient satisfaction
• Process measures: ‘Are we doing the right things to get our goals?’
For example, delivery time of specific process steps
You may also find it helpful to watch this IHI video on the Family of Measures