MIT Resources

Measurement for Improvement Team: Resources

As we work in partnership with services at all levels in the HSE, we advise on best practice for analysing and displaying information, we develop tools to support quality improvement initiatives, and we share examples of work so that learning is spread as widely as possible. The following list of resources will continue to be updated, so please contact us if there are specific resources that you would like to see added here. Just click on any of the following links to get more information:

Prioritising Measures of Quality of Care checklist (.pdf)

Excel template for Prioritising Measures of Quality of Care (.xls)

Excel template for creating a 'C' chart (type of Statistical Control Chart) (.xls)

5 Rules for interpreting Statistical Process Control (SPC) charts (.pdf)

Excel template for creating a Run Chart

Measurement for Improvement - Guidance Note on Key Concepts (.pdf)

Guidance on how to use and analyse surveys (.pdf)

Measurement Plan template

Sample Driver Diagram: National Quality Profile

Sample Driver Diagram: improve your golf

Some 'Do's and Don'ts' of measurement Toolkit

Prioritising Measures of Quality of Care

prioritisation picture

Many services are actively working on increasing the amount of information available to them that specifically relates to quality of care.  The Measurement for Improvement Team and the Quality Improvement Division have been involved in a number of projects where we have been asked to provide guidance in this area. This twelve point checklist is based on the guidance we have provided to date. These issues should be kept in mind when prioritising the development of new measures of quality of care. It is important to remember when going through this checklist, that while a specific measure may not meet all ten criteria listed, it is important to be aware of any limitations of measures developed. 

Click here to download the 'Prioritisating Measures of Quality of Care' Checklist as a .pdf document.

Download the 'Prioritisating Measures of Quality of Care' Checklist as a .pdf document.

In practical terms, when using the 'Prioritising Measures of Quality of Care' checklist, some have found an Excel version of the checklist useful in keeping together the relevant information for a number of measures. It is also useful when a group of people are working together to complete the checklist, so that work is not duplicated. The Excel file contains some additional information for each measure to ensure that the checklist is applied to a defined, specific measure.

Download the Prioritising Measures of Quality of Care checklist (MS Excel file).

Statistical Process Control (SPC) Charts

In order to answer the question, 'How will we know that a change is an improvement?', we need a way of presenting and analysing data. Statistical Process Control Charts are commonly used in Quality Improvement and other fields as they provide a method that answers this question. In this section we have provided an excel template for one type of control chart: a 'C chart'. Over time, we aim to expand the suite of templates provided in this section and to include examples of where they can be used in healthcare.

Download MS Excel template for creating a 'C chart'.

Run Charts

A Run Chart is a graphical display of data plotted in order over time (weeks, months etc). It includes a centre line based on the median of the data.

Run charts can assist in understanding variation and are used to examine data trends or other patterns that occur over time. Run charts visually depict the history and patterns of variation in an indicator or measure. Plotting data regularly on a graph shows when shifts and changes occur, and can help identify if and when problems appear.

The template below is from the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI), America.

Download IHI template for Run Chart

Measurement for Improvement - Guidance Note on Key Concepts

This is a key resource when considering how to present your data, including how to create run charts. The guidance is consistent with that presented in the literature and for further detail, 'the Health Care Data Guide' (2011) by Provost and Murray is a useful reference text.
Download a copy of the Measurement for Improvement Guidance Note (PDF)

Designing, Conducting, Analysing and Presenting Surveys

The Measurement for Improvement team has developed some guidance on designing, conducting, analysing and presenting surveys. This guidance is based on experience in responding to queries on all aspects of surveys used for research or service delivery information collection. The document is currently in draft, and has been circulated for consultation. Following feedback, a final version of the document will be available early in the new year. Please check back then for the updated version.
Download the 'designing, conducting, analysing and presenting surveys' draft guidance document (PDF).

Measurement Plan Template

A Measurement Plan is a tool that describes the rationale behind choosing a measure, the type of measure, the relevant definitions and how to collect and present the measure. In bringing all the relevant information together, it helps ensure that all members of a Quality Improvement Team have clarity on all aspects of measurement being carried out. Click here for more information from the NHS Scotland Quality Improvement Hub on using a Measurement plan.
Download the Measurement Plan template in MS Excel.

Driver Diagram Templates

A Driver Diagram is a commonly used tool to plan Quality Improvement Projects. It allows users to identify the specific improvement activities (Primary and Secondary Drivers) that will help to achieve the Quality Improvement Project aim. Click here to access the NHS Scotland Quality Improvement Hub web page for more information on using Driver Diagrams. We have provided two Microsoft Word examples of Driver Diagrams below which may also be used as templates for other projects.
Sample Driver Diagram: National Quality Profile: this example is taken from the National Quality Profile project.
Sample Driver Diagram: improve your golf: this example is taken from a personal improvement project.

Do's and Don'ts of Measurement

There are a number of common problems that people encounter when describing aspeacts of measurement. This Powerpoint Presentation includes examples of some of the common mistakes people make inadvertently when dealing with measurement.

 'Do's and Don'ts of Measurement' Toolkit

The measurement for Improvement team has led on is the development of Quality Profiles across a number of services and is currently involved in partnership projects at national level, divisional level and local service delivery level. The webpage provides a detailed summary of the learning achieved through some of these quality profile projects. In particular, the toolkit contains links to a range of further resources that were developed specifically from the Quality Profiles projects.