Intensive Care Unit Improvement Plan

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Quality improvement and performance in intensive care units

Quality improvement and performance is key to any hospital, especially in the intensive care units. The improvement plan for an intensive care unit includes areas of patient safety, quality outcomes, patient care operations, customer satisfaction, and efficiency of care. For patient care improvement, there must be a coordinated and integrated approach to error reduction. The plan must be aimed at achieving an environment that is patient safety conscious, an improvement on areas of medical errors reporting, confidential event reporting, evidence-based practices implementation and subsequent expansion, and reduction of medical errors (Curran & Totten 2011, par 23). This paper considers Plan-Do-Study-Act in evaluating, improvement and monitoring of the patients in intensive care unit.

The process of improvement and data collection

The process would involve planning of the improvement processes coupled with the continuous process of data collection. The 'Do' process involves improvement of the hospital system, a collection of the data and the analysis of the collected data. Under the 'check' process, the improvement plan should check and then study the found results. Under the last module, 'Act', would involve the process of continuous improvement of the processes involved in achieving patient safety.

Planning for effective functions and processes

In order to develop and plan effective functions, processes, and services, certain factors need consideration. These include the design of process, expectations and patient needs, and the use of current literature on effective guidelines for best practice processes. The findings from the baseline performance and subsequent expectations will then be used for assessment and measurement of the activities (Mednet 2017, p.6). The performance evaluation and monitoring standards include divisions, departments, focused populations and then services lines. The intensive care improvement under the national patient safety plan process would measure certain processes in a continuous process both proactively and in occurrences. The selected processes characterized by high risk, high volume, problems, and high cost are then analyzed, measured, and then improved in a continuous process.

Performance improvement projects

The projects that deal with performance improvements are designed for the purpose of monitoring the expected results and performance within the intensive care unit. The projects assess, measure, maintain, and then improve process performance and improvement. The levels of performance may be made through comparison performance with other institutions in identifying other failure modes. Every monitored activity has a performance threshold that can then measure the performance that is expected from the improvement plan in the intensive care unit.

Data collection for improvement

Under the 'Do' category of the improvement plan, a collection of data would be on the basis of improving the activity performance and give a means for determining performance. The program at the intensive care unit data is collected for the purposes of measuring performance on the basis of frequency and priorities for the healthcare organization. The 'do' category would establish a baseline in redesigning of the process. Other establishments would include process stability, dimensions of stability, performance dimensions that are related to processes, functions, and outcomes, improvement areas identification, improvement areas that directly affect the patients in the intensive care unit and whether the change determination processes then meet the objectives. Similarly, the collected data to be used in continuous measurement improvement in addition to the data from the field for priority issues.

Assessment and conclusion

The activities here involve assessment of the processes inclusive of the disciplines of the intensive care unit department in coming up with conclusions on the need and the necessities for intensive measurement. The improvement plan will have a systematic process in the assessment of data and then determine whether the requirement specifications for the redesigned processes were actually met together with the stability and performance of critical and current processes. The priorities for improvement of the existing processes, the actions for process improvement and then whether the changes themselves in the process would then give improved results from the assessment.

Actions for improvement

The actions here would include changes in the system in terms of communication channels, staffing adjustments, the use of equipment, and how to handle medical errors within the intensive care unit. The other actions would include enhancement of knowledge in continuous education, intensive review of performance especially in issues of medical errors, root cause analysis where errors are detected and the causal analysis that then determines the causes of the variations of the previous and the newly redesigned system for quality improvement within the intensive care department.

Analysis of failure modes and evaluation

Consequently, the other planned actions include the analysis of the failure modes. This category involves the frequent types of patient safety and sentinel event risk factors. For this case, at least among many other risk factors, a high-risk process is chosen for every year and then proactively involved in risk assessment. The other actions would include behavioral changes where formal and informal counseling, changes, and consultations in the assignments and the disciplinary actions. The intensive care unit is very sensitive and therefore it cannot be used as the basis for making practical changes that are not meant for the ultimate good and safety of the patients themselves.

Continuous evaluation and modification of the plan

The assessment under this category includes the use of techniques for statistical processes as the appropriate measure. When the resultant data from the assessment demonstrates performance variations to the safety of the patients, there would be the need for more intensive analysis of the measurements conducted, and then additionally, the intensive care department then would carry out the reassessment of the performance. In case the measurement under the plan does not meet the predetermined threshold, or if further evaluation is necessary, the quality improvement process ought to continue. Where there is an improvement for the period of time set aside by the intensive care department, an intensive evaluation then is needful from the quality improvement plan with regards to the need itself.

Redesigning and establishment of priorities

When the improvement performance opportunities have been identified, a carefully planned systematic approach is then used in redesigning the process and or to do other new processes (Mednet 2017, p.9). The quality improvement plan team can be used to establish priorities and subsequently provide the resources for effective use. If there is an opportunity for improvement, the specific department and for this case, the intensive care unit, determines if the other departments of the healthcare organization can impact the process of redesigning. The hospital organization can create a team for implementation where improvement opportunities are referred from the involved departments.

Regular evaluation, review, and revision

The formed team will then come up with improvement priorities on the basis of the established guidelines. The patient safety plan can then be regularly evaluated, reviewed, and then revised to incorporate the current standards. The summary of the evaluation results and outcomes can then be submitted to the management. The review carried out annually then would do out the assessment, on the basis of the scope, objectives appropriateness, and organizational effectiveness of the program itself (“Muskoka Algonquin Healthcare” 2015-2018, p.7). The modification of the plan can also be done from the outcome of the evaluation. The intensive care unit department under quality improvement plan will review, revise, and evaluate the activities of performance improvement and the necessary plans every year as part of the review of the healthcare organization.


Curran, C., & Totten, M. (2011). Governing for Improved Quality and Patient Safety. Best on Board, 1-41.


Muskoka Algonquin Healthcare. (2015-2018). Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Plan, 1-33.

October 24, 2023

Business Health Life

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