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Arch Hellen Med, 34(3), May-June 2017, 327-333


The total quality management system as a prospect for the Greek hospital

J. Koukoufilippou,1 G. Bobos,1 D. Bogri,2 V. Vasilakopoulou,1 A. Koinis1,3
1Nursing Unit of Argos, General Hospital of Argolida, Argos,
2Special Vocational Education and Training in Argolida (EEEEK), Nafplio,
3Department of Nursing, Faculty of Human Movement and Quality of Life, University of the Peloponnese, Sparta, Greece

Ensuring the quality of health services is a challenge for public and private nursing units. In Greece, during the past decade tentative steps have been made in this direction. This is a literature review conducted in an attempt to provide a definition of quality in health care and to investigate the use of the total quality management system (TQM) as a tool for improving the quality of the provision of hospital health services. The hospital is called upon to implement quality metrics and institute specific measures in order to move towards quality improvement. During the economic crisis there is an urgent need to improve productivity and provide better services while reducing hospital costs. The complexity of the problem and the lack of political will have delayed the process, although many have been involved in efforts for the upgrading of health services, and the relevant data are available, whereas the means and the pathways are already known. Implementation of appropriate strategies depends on political will, the knowledge of how to apply them, and, ultimately, the financial resources available. Substantial improvement of health services, and not just the application of some sterile certification procedures, will contribute to satisfying the need for better health care in Greece, and thus improve the well-being of its citizens.

Key words: Assurance, Health care quality, Quality criteria, Quality indicators, Total quality management (TQM).

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