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Individual and Institutional Variables Which May Serve as Indicators of Quality of Medical Care

R. Heather Palmer and Margaret Connorton Reilly
Medical Care
Vol. 17, No. 7 (Jul., 1979), pp. 693-717
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3764215
Page Count: 25
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Individual and Institutional Variables Which May Serve as Indicators of Quality of Medical Care
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Abstract

This article is a critical review of empiric studies, in the medical care literature of the past two decades, that investigated associations between characteristics of physicians and medical care institutions and some measure of the quality of medical care given by them. The intention is to identify those characteristics of physicians and medical care institutions which can be considered the best indicators of the quality of performance to be expected, given the present state of knowledge. The analysis discusses 18 such characteristics but derives a list of 14 which appear to be the best choice of indicators on which further research might focus. It would be possible to design a survey instrument based on these characteristics, which, if upheld by empiric testing, could serve as a crude assessment tool for third parties needing to make quality comparisons between medical care institutions.

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