The improving quality of care is done through Quality management. Quality management can be described as "'a procedure explicitly designed to monitor, assess and improve the quality of care', for example peer review, patient satisfaction surveys, complaints handling, audits, compiling a quality manual, etc".
Common components found in Quality Management systems are:
- Indicators & standards
- Evaluation process: Internal / External
- Improvement process
Regarding the indicators & standards, European (framework of ) standards can be of great help in developing and implementing standards.
The principal models of external evaluation are:
- Medical speciality-driven visitation
- European Quality Awards based on the model of the European Foundation of Quality Management (EFQM)
- Certification using International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) standards
- Traditional accreditation against explicit standards
EAHM calls for a "European Accreditation Model". This European Accreditation Model
- …is not about a fully-fledged harmonisation of healthcare practices, but a gradual alignment
- …has the aim of defining and sharing best practice and defining relevant guidelines
- …can encompass differences but not contradictions in systems
- focuses on the continuous improvement of quality standards in Europe and reduces existing variations in quality