Quality of medical and surgical care is a profoundly felt need of every patient, of every involved family. Although based on slightly different motivations, the same is requested by those who pay for the care. Therefore, the interest in defining and measuring the quality of provided care is high. This is, however, a highly complex endeavor. It requires in-depth knowledge, differentiation, multiple perspectives and expert judgment.
How can we define “quality of care”?
The Institute of Medicine (IOM) of the US National Academy of Sciences defines it as “the degree to which health services for individuals and population increase the likelihood of desired health outcomes and are consistent with current professional knowledge.”