IAHSA Quality Movement Background
Over the years, IAHSA established itself as a global leader in ageing services by creating an active network of providers, government officials and businesses dedicated to addressing global issues. Leveraging its global leadership in the field, IAHSA is calling all of its members to focus on improving the quality of life for the elders served.
To assess the needs of the international community, IAHSA reviewed many international and regional quality initiatives. The IAHSA Quality Movement reflects all appropriate elements presented in these schemes and does not compete and/or replace any country/government quality improvement system.
The review found that many of these programmes incorporate similar elements. Most notably, the review revealed that it is imperative that we address both the quality of life for the residents and the quality of the organisation. To accomplish this, the IAHSA Quality Movement embraces the following unifying principles:
- Person-Directed Care – This element would include promotion of physical and emotional well being, as well as ensuring the patient and family members are properly informed. Examples of person-centered care are culture change, programmes to fulfill spiritual wellbeing and encouraging diversity in all aspects. Person-centered care is key to a high quality of life for residents.
- Continuous Quality Improvement – Continuous quality improvement (CQI) is an approach that actively involves staff at all levels of an organisation in understanding problems and the processes of work that underlie them. This approach goes beyond ensuring that minimum standards are met to focus on how an organisation can continually do better at meeting and exceeding the needs and expectations of its customers.
- Workforce Excellence – This includes providing training, competitive wages and benefits, and a supportive workplace environment. The ability to attract, retain and develop both front line and management staff, along with the ability to foster and maintain a healthy workplace culture, are core elements.
- Leadership & Integrity – This element incorporates all parts of running an ethical and financially sound organisation. It calls for the establishment of structural mechanisms by which providers can enhance their leadership skills and refine quality improvement, corporate compliance, risk management and integrated strategic planning efforts.
- Innovation – This includes implementing models and practices that are based on evidence of success, represent the tradition of personal service and are adaptable to a changing society. It is essential that ageing services providers play an active role in: developing and refining innovative models and/or practices to improve quality; evaluating and measuring the extent to which such models and/or practices actually impact quality; identifying the reasons they work and how they may differ from other practices; and sharing such valuable information with peer provider organisations and other stakeholders in the ageing services field.
- Community Involvement – This element includes involvement with the larger community outside of the facility, but also includes the families of residents. It stresses volunteer involvement and relationship building with the community at-large: associates, consumers, professionals and businesses. All of these elements enhance an organisation's ability to provide quality care to older people and positive working conditions for employees. They reinforce the commitment to serving and being an integral part of communities.
IAHSA Quality Movement is designed to work in conjunction with the quality improvement programs you are currently using. The hope is that this movement will allow members to improve the field of ageing services by creating a common definition of quality and nurturing a strong positive image across stakeholders.
It doesn’t matter where in the world older people live, through the IAHSA Quality Movement we can have a significant impact on the quality of life for them.