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Total quality management (TQM) in a hospital library: identifying service benchmarks.

Authors
  • Fischer, W W
  • Reel, L B
Type
Published Article
Journal
Bulletin of the Medical Library Association
Publication Date
Oct 01, 1992
Volume
80
Issue
4
Pages
347–352
Identifiers
PMID: 1422505
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

Hospitals are turning to total quality management (TQM) to lower costs of providing care. A hospital library in a TQM environment needs to embrace corporate goals while maintaining its accountability as a contributor to quality patient care. Alliant Health System (AHS) Library at Norton Hospital and Kosair Children's Hospital in Louisville, Kentucky, conducted a study to establish TQM benchmarks and to examine the significance of its role in clinical care. Using a methodology designed to allow both library user and nonuser to respond, 2,091 surveys were distributed to physicians and nursing and allied health personnel. Areas surveyed included frequency of library use, impact of information received on clinical judgments, cognitive value of the information, and satisfaction with library products and services. Results confirm that the library has a substantial clinical role. Eighty-eight percent of reporting physicians agreed that information from the library contributed to higher quality care. Nursing and allied health were less convinced of the importance of the library's clinical role. Sixty-nine percent of nursing personnel and 58% of allied health personnel agreed that the library contributed to higher quality care. Nursing and allied health personnel also used the library less frequently than physicians. With these results as benchmarks, improving the clinical role of the library will take commitment to the TQM process and a willingness to change.

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