Discussion: Using Evaluation Tools to Assess Quality Improvement Efforts

Evaluation is a critical component of any quality improvement plan. This week, you examine evaluation tools that can be used to monitor quality improvement efforts, and consider how to appropriately measure outcomes. In addition, you explore the value of metrics for communicating this information.

Also this week, you continue to develop your Course Project by synthesizing your analysis and recommendations into an action plan for a quality improvement initiative.

Like most other things in life, outcomes are the bottom line with respect to measurement of success along the path of quality improvement. However, without a careful analysis of the link between access, process, and structure of care, improvements in outcomes seem unattainable.

—Sadeghi, Barzi, Mikhail, & Shabot, 2013

In this Discussion, you consider how to collect and analyze qualitative and quantitative data to evaluate the results of quality improvement initiatives. In addition, you discuss the significance of evaluation and how you, as a nurse leader-manager, can contribute in an organization to the large-scale goal of facilitating quality improvement.

To prepare:

Review methods for measuring and evaluating quality improvement efforts presented in the Learning Resources. Pay particular attention to how and why it is important to measure outcomes.

Select one evaluation tool and analyze its benefits and relevance for the quality improvement plan you are developing for your Course Project.

Consider how you, as a nurse leader-manager, can use the results from the evaluation to support the organization’s overarching goals for quality improvement.

Post a brief description of the evaluation tool that you selected. Explain the benefits of applying this tool as part of your quality improvement plan in the Course Project. Also explain how you could use the results from the evaluation to support the organization’s overarching goals for quality improvement.

Read a selection of your colleagues’ responses.

Respond to at least two of your colleagues on two different days using one or more of the following approaches:

Suggest an alternative evaluation tool and support your suggestion with evidence from current research literature.

Share an insight from having read your colleagues’ postings, synthesizing the information to provide new perspectives. 

Validate an idea with your own experience and additional resources.

Required Readings

Hickey, J. V., & Brosnan, C. A. (2017). Evaluation  of health care quality in for DNPs (2nd  ed.). New York, NY: Springer Publishing Company.

Review Chapter 3, “Conceptual Models for Evaluation in Advanced Nursing Practice” (pp. 61-86) (assigned in Week 3)

Sadeghi, S., Barzi, A., Mikhail, O., & Shabot, M. M. (2013). Integrating quality and strategy in health care organizations, Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Publishers.

Review Chapter 8, “Quantifying the Quality Performance Gaps” (pp. 161–177) (assigned in Week 6)

The authors focus on performance measures with particular focus on the relationship between financial and quality performance.

Review Chapter 9, “Closing the Gaps” (pp. 179–194) (assigned in Week 7)

This chapter explains how to utilize data collected during the evaluation stage in order to improve the quality of health care.

Institute of Medicine. (2001). Crossing the quality chasm: A new health system for the 21st century. Washington, DC: National Academy Press.

Retrieved from

This report outlines the Institute of Medicine’s (IOM’s) six aims to improve the quality of health care. Review this information through the lens of evaluation. (Assigned in a previous week.)

 Kaplan, R. S., & Norton, D. P. (1992). The balanced scorecard—Measures that drive performance. Harvard Business Review, 70(1), 71–79.

Retrieved from

In this seminal article, the authors introduce the use of a new performance measurement system called the balanced scorecard. The balanced scorecard provides a comprehensive framework for leaders and managers to align strategic objectives with performance measures.

 Kaplan, R. S., & Norton, D. P. (1996). Linking the balanced scorecard to strategy. California Management Review, 39(1), 53–79.

Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.

In this early follow-up article, Kaplan and Norton further explain research on the use and application of the balanced scorecard.

 Balanced Scorecard Institute. (2012). What is the balanced scorecard? Retrieved from 

 Institute for Healthcare Improvement. (2012b). The IHI triple aim. Retrieved from

Optional Resources

 Marr, B. (2012). What is a balanced scorecard? Retrieved from

Please use the below links: