Quality Improvement & Assessment in Healthcare

I.     Course Prefix/Number: HIT 221

       Course Name: Quality Improvement & Assessment in Healthcare

       Credits: 3 (3 lecture; 0 lab)

II.    Prerequisite

HIT 108, HIT 201, and BIO 232 with minimum grades of C; and consent of instructor or department chair.

III.   Course (Catalog) Description

Course focuses on quality improvement and assessment in a variety of healthcare settings. Content includes implementation of quality tools and techniques as they relate to the health information department activities of acute care hospitals, long term care facilities, behavioral health settings, hospital outpatient and emergency departments, ambulatory care settings, and quality issues related to medical staff activities.

IV.   Learning Objectives

  1. Trace the historical events that have contributed to modern performance improvement programs in healthcare.
  2. Identify the key legislation that has influenced healthcare quality initiatives.
  3. Describe the key individuals and organizations that have shaped the theory and developed models for use in performance improvement activities.
  4. Define terminology and standards common to performance improvement activities.
  5. Distinguish between organization-wide performance improvement and team-based performance improvement activities.
  6. Describe the significance of outcomes and proactive risk reduction in performance improvement methodology.
  7. Discuss the function of project management in performance improvement programs.
  8. Explain Quality Improvement (QI) tools commonly used to assess and improve the quality of care and services provided in health care facilities.
  9. Analyze health data for changes in performance displayed in graphic form.
  10. Design graphic displays for given set of data.
  11. Apply communication tools such as minutes, quarterly reports, and presentations in performance improvement process.
  12. Explain the method used to develop a continuum of care in a community healthcare setting.
  13. Describe how the National Patient Safety Goals interface with the performance improvement cycle in patient care.
  14. Identify the governmental organizations that develop regulations for infection control in healthcare organizations.
  15. Explain the functions of a risk management program.
  16. Analyze the importance of using occurrence reporting to decrease risk exposure in healthcare organizations.
  17. Discuss how sentinel events identify important opportunities to improve safety in healthcare organizations.
  18. Apply the failure mode and effects analysis (FMEA) tool as a proactive risk reduction strategy in medication system failures.
  19. Describe requirements for internal and external disaster plans for hospitals.
  20. Prepare and deliver an oral presentation to the class on a selected HIM topic.

V.    Academic Integrity and Student Conduct

Students and employees at Oakton Community College are required to demonstrate academic integrity and follow Oakton's Code of Academic Conduct. This code prohibits:

• cheating,
• plagiarism (turning in work not written by you, or lacking proper citation),
• falsification and fabrication (lying or distorting the truth),
• helping others to cheat,
• unauthorized changes on official documents,
• pretending to be someone else or having someone else pretend to be you,
• making or accepting bribes, special favors, or threats, and
• any other behavior that violates academic integrity.

There are serious consequences to violations of the academic integrity policy. Oakton's policies and procedures provide students a fair hearing if a complaint is made against you. If you are found to have violated the policy, the minimum penalty is failure on the assignment and, a disciplinary record will be established and kept on file in the office of the Vice President for Student Affairs for a period of 3 years.

Please review the Code of Academic Conduct and the Code of Student Conduct, both located online at

VI.   Sequence of Topics

VII.  Methods of Instruction

The class will be conducted in a lecture-discussion format.  Students will complete assignments utilizing online, text, and other resources as directed by the instructor.  Individual and team projects will revolve around weekly topics.  Students will complete course work and projects both in class and outside of the classroom.  Exams may be taken in the classroom or remotely at the decision of the instructor.

Course may be taught as face-to-face, hybrid or online course.

VIII. Course Practices Required

Course may be taught as face-to-face, hybrid, or online course. Students are expected to attend classes, complete assignments, do required readings prior to class and participate in class discussions.  Assignments should be submitted on due dates provided by the instructor, and all assignments will be in a Word, Excel, Visio, or other electronic format as specified by the assignment.  No handwritten assignments are accepted, and all assignments will be posted to Drop Boxes or other D2L submission sites.  No assignments should be e-mailed to the instructor. 

IX.   Instructional Materials

Note: Current textbook information for each course and section is available on Oakton's Schedule of Classes.

Quality & Performance Improvement in Healthcare.  Patricia Shaw et al. 6th Ed.

X.    Methods of Evaluating Student Progress

Students will be evaluated on course assignments, performance on announced quizzes and tests, and on an oral presentation on an assigned topic.  Students will be expected to demonstrate skills cited in the course objectives.

The following HIT Department grade scale is utilized:
A = 94%
B = 88%
C = 82%
D = 76%
F = Below 76%

XI.   Other Course Information

CAHIIM Curriculum Competencies and Knowledge Clusters for Health Information Management (HIM) Education at the Associate Degree Level

III. Informatics, Analytics and Data Use
III.B Information Management Strategic Planning
III.C Analytics and Decision Support
III.D Healthcare Statistics
III.H Information Integrity and Data Quality
V. Compliance
V.A Regulatory
V.B Coding
V.D Clinical Documentation Improvement
VI.A Leadership Roles
VI.C Work Design and Process Improvement
VI.F Strategic and Organizational Management

IV.A. Subdomain: Information and Communication Technologies
2. Use common software applications such as
spreadsheets, databases, word processing, graphics,
presentation, e-mail, and so on in the execution of
work processes.
IV.C. Subdomain: Data Storage and Retrieval
  1. Use appropriate electronic or imaging technology.
IV.C. Subdomain: Data Storage and Retrieval
3. Apply retention and destruction policies for health
IV.D. Subdomain: Data Security
4. Use and summarize data compiled from audit trails
and data quality monitoring
IV.D. Subdomain: Data Security
  1. Apply departmental and organizational data, and informational system security policies.
V.A. Subdomain: Human Resources
1. Apply the fundamentals of team leadership.
V.A. Subdomain: Human Resources
2. . Participate in and work in
teams and committees.
V.A. Subdomain: Human Resources
3. Conduct orientation and
training programs.
V.A. Subdomain: Human Resources
5. Use tools and techniques to monitor, report,
and improve processes.

If you have a documented learning, psychological, or physical disability, you may be entitled to reasonable academic accommodations or services. To request accommodations or services, contact the Access and Disability Resource Center at the Des Plaines or Skokie campus. All students are expected to fulfill essential course requirements. The College will not waive any essential skill or requirement of a course or degree program.

If you have a documented learning, psychological, or physical disability you may be entitled to reasonable academic accommodations or services. To request accommodations or services, contact the Access and Disability Resource Center at the Des Plaines or Skokie campus. All students are expected to fulfill essential course requirements. The College will not waive any essential skill or requirement of a course or degree program.

Oakton Community College is committed to maintaining a campus environment emphasizing the dignity and worth of all members of the community, and complies with all federal and state Title IX requirements.

Resources and support for
  • pregnancy-related and parenting accommodations; and
  • victims of sexual misconduct
can be found at www.oakton.edu/title9/.

Resources and support for LGBTQ+ students can be found at www.oakton.edu/lgbtq.

Electronic video and/or audio recording is not permitted during class unless the student obtains written permission from the instructor. In cases where recordings are allowed, such content is restricted to personal use only. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited. Personal use is defined as use by an individual student for the purpose of studying or completing course assignments.

For students who have been approved for audio and/or video recording of lectures and other classroom activities as a reasonable accommodation by Oakton’s Access Disabilities Resource Center (ADRC), applicable federal law requires instructors to permit those recordings. Such recordings are also limited to personal use. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited.

Violation of this policy will result in disciplinary action through the Code of Student Conduct.