A movement underfoot in industry is rapidly infiltrating all branches of medicine, and specialties, such as otolaryngology-head and neck surgery, are being encouraged to join the ranks. Quality improvement is not new to medicine, but the increased mandate by insurance companies, government agencies, and patients for physicians and health care systems to demonstrate quality care is placing new demands on specialties to develop metrics that accurately and adequately measure quality within their field.
Explore this issue:December 2008
This is probably one of the most crucial things that is going to affect all physicians within the next 10 years, said David R. Nielsen, MD, Executive Vice President and Chief Executive Officer of the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery/Foundation (AAO-HNS/F).
For Dr. Nielsen, who spoke during a miniseminar on this topic during the recent annual meeting of the AAO-HNS in Chicago, specialties such as otolaryngology-head and neck surgery need to take a lead in developing their own measurements of quality to, above all else, keep the focus on the patient.