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Quality Assurance Through Quality Improvement and Professional Development in the National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program
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Details:
  • Pubmed ID:
    25099901
  • Pubmed Central ID:
    PMC4459517
  • Description:
    Quality assurance (QA) is the process of providing evidence that the outcome meets the established standards. Quality improvement (QI), by contrast, is the act of methodically developing ways to meet acceptable quality standards and evaluating current processes to improve overall performance. In the case of the National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program (NBCCEDP), the desired outcome is the delivery of quality health care services to program clients. The NBCCEDP provides professional development to ensure that participating providers have current knowledge of evidence-based clinical standards regarding breast and cervical cancer screening and diagnosis and are monitoring women with abnormal screening results for timely follow-up. To assess the quality of clinical care provided to NBCCEDP clients, performance data are collected by NBCCEDP grantees and compared against predetermined Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) benchmarks known as Data Quality Indicator Guides. In this article, the authors describe 1) the development and use of indicators for QI in the NBCCEDP and 2) the professional development activities implemented to improve clinical outcomes. QA identifies problems, whereas QI systematically corrects them. The quality of service delivery and improved patient outcomes among NBCCEDP grantees has enhanced significantly because of continuous monitoring of performance and professional development. By using QA, NBCCEDP grantees can maximize the quality of patient screening, diagnostic services, and follow-up. Examples of grantee activities to maintain quality of care are also described in this report.

  • Document Type:
  • Collection(s):
  • Funding:
    CC999999/Intramural CDC HHS/United States
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