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Evaluating Quality Improvement and Patient Safety Projects


Despite many attempts to improve quality and patient safety, projects often are not rigorously evaluated, making it difficult to determine whether improvements were actually made. Among the quality improvement/patient safety (QI/PS) evaluations that are conducted, a fair portion are done post-hoc, without a guiding conceptual framework or theory, and are underfunded. Further, contextual data that can help explain why some sites achieve greater success than others is often not collected or analyzed, constraining the further application of interventions to other settings.

This two-and-a-half-day course prepares participants to evaluate QI/PS projects by developing their competencies in three areas: designing a robust evaluation of a project; conducting a small-scale qualitative study; and critiquing evaluations of projects in the academic literature and elsewhere. The lessons will present examples from both large-scale, multi-site improvement programs, as well as projects at the unit or clinic level.

Standard participants: $1,395 per participant. Group discounts of 20 percent are available when you register three or more participants. Registration fee includes instructional materials, breakfast, lunch and an afternoon snack.

Johns Hopkins Medicine employees: No cost. Seats limited.

Please see our cancellation and refund policy.


Learning Objectives

Upon successfully completing this course, students will be able to:

  • Enumerate and communicate the importance of understanding environmental, organizational, group, provider, task, work system, implementation and patient influences on outcomes
  • Describe and evaluate strengths and weaknesses of designs for testing success of QI/PS interventions
  • Describe operational steps to conducting robust data collection and analysis (quantitative and qualitative)
  • Define and describe remedies for common problems in QI/PS studies

Topics Covered

  • Introduction to QI/PS initiatives and changes
  • Identifying framework and stakeholders
  • Financial impact assessment of interventions
  • Evaluation design
  • Data collection and quality control
  • Quantitative data analysis
  • Using a logical framework in evaluation
  • Qualitative methods

The Participant Experience

In addition to class lectures and discussions, participants will frequently break into work groups in which they will apply course concepts to challenges in QI/PS project evaluation. Participants are encouraged, but not required, to come to the course with a project that they are working on or a project idea for group discussion.

The course provides a mix of practical how-to information and research-based evaluation concepts.


Jill Marsteller, Ph.D., M.P.P
Professor of Health Policy and Management
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

Location and Times

Constellation Energy Building
15th Floor Training Space
750 E. Pratt St.
Baltimore, MD 21202
Get details on parking, hotels and attractions.


Email or call 410-637-7170.

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