Quality planning and organizational performance enhancement initiatives concentrated on distinct measurable focus areas have the potential to bring substantial positive changes in the healthcare system (Weston & Roberts, 2013). However, to ensure that a meeting is conducted effectively, it is important to write meeting minutes capturing the essential information discussed during the organizational quality improvement sessions. The given paper aims to analyze quality planning meeting minutes. The review of the key discussion points, arrangement features, and formulated objectives provided in the paper helps to evaluate the overall effectiveness of the meeting and identify potential barriers towards the efficient realization of the quality improvement plan.
The participants were notified about the meeting via email service a few days before the meeting date. Then, the meeting agenda and notes were sent out to all nursing staff members including those people who could not attend the planning session.
The minutes are taken in the digital format and are based on the agenda. It includes such standard components as the list of attendees, discussed topics, decisions, agreements, objectives, and estimated time frames. As mentioned by Smith (2013), when the structure of the written minutes is based on the meeting agenda, the records are associated with greater accuracy. The preliminary plan outlining the main phases of the session course helped to structure the document containing the minutes and allowed constructing it in the right sequence without skipping any important points.
During the meeting, the participants discussed the following issues: potential barriers to improved service quality, methods aimed to evaluate patient health outcomes and satisfaction, refinement of organizational quality measures, the efficiency of the current plan for nursing care, goals to integrate suggested quality measures in practice and enable the regular use of new quality assessment tools. The discussion allowed the team to plan possible ways to optimize data collection tools aimed to measure patient satisfaction and support the improvement of important service quality factors such as patient communication, and safety culture. However, to achieve positive outcomes, it is important to ensure that quality improvement initiatives are regularly followed. In this regard, the meeting minutes included the due dates and responsibilities associated with every follow-up item in the document. The monitoring, reporting, and assessment methods are also briefly outlined.
Although the minutes do not provide an extensive overview of the raised issues, the document briefly summarizes them in a clear and readable manner. To ensure the meeting notes capture the essentials of the discussion, they include short statements of each decision made during the meeting, a summary of actions, and their justifications. The main function of any meeting minutes is the provision of a history of the committee’s activities aimed to track all changes made in the healthcare systems (Anagnostis, 2014). To perform this function, the notes should be written objectively. Consistently with the given argument, the reviewed meeting minutes do not include personal observations and criticism. The arguments for and against the decisions are written without any critical evaluation. At the same time, all the important discussion points are recorded. Thus, the minutes provide sufficient unbiased information without giving a lot of detail.
The identification of measurable and accurate criteria for quality assessment is core to success in the realization of any quality initiative (Barnhorst, Martinez, & Gershengorn, 2014). One of the quality metrics established during the meeting was the achievement of a decrease in morbidity rates (e.g., due to hospital-acquired infections) and improvement of the overall treatment outcomes. The formulated short-term objectives were the implementation of quality and safety assessment techniques such as nursing checklists, regular patient education, and reception of patients’ feedback. Since some attendees expressed concern about the negative impact of the new safety and quality improvement practices on the nurses’ workloads, it was decided to perform these practices during the two-month trial period and assess their efficacy on the individual level and provide reports to a nurse leader. It was decided to discuss the short-term outcomes at the secondary meeting that will take place in February 2017.
Anagnostis, E. (2014). Writing meeting minutes for a pharmacy and therapeutics committee and its subcommittees. American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy, 72(2), 95-99. Web.
Barnhorst, A. B., Martinez, M., & Gershengorn, H. B. (2014). Quality improvement strategies for critical care nursing. American Journal of Critical Care, 24(1), 87-92. Web.
Smith, L. S. (2013). Documenting the minutes at professional meetings. Nursing, 43(2), 60-62. Web.
Weston, M., & Roberts, D. (2013). The influence of quality improvement efforts on patient outcomes and nursing work: A perspective from chief nursing officers at three large health systems. The Online Journal of Issues in Nursing, 18(3), 2.