Aligning Forces for Quality is, at its heart, about innovation. The communities and people who engage with this unique program are not only open to new ideas, but also enthusiastic to find them; not only willing collaborators, but also eager to build strong partnerships; not only the most creative scientists, but also determined to experiment until the answers become clear.
There is no recipe for success in improving health care quality. We would welcome a clear solution to a challenge like ensuring equity in care. How much simpler it would be if one community could try on solutions until one fit, and then everyone could replicate it. We would like nothing more than to offer up the answers to the hard problems we face. But of course, each community is different – in the illnesses that plague it, in the socioeconomic grid that impacts it, in the people that define it. There can be no one recipe for improvement, no one template for reform.
Which is why we need creative laboratories like the 16 that comprise AF4Q.
There is no recipe, but the Aligning Forces communities and others engaged in this work are creating a roadmap, one that points out both areas to avoid and areas worth a harder look.
The bright spots featured here are illustrative of the type of ground level innovation and experimentation going on every day, in ways big and small, where change can be measured and assessed in real time. Both sparks of success and hard lessons learned offer important guidance.
They don’t begin to cover all that we have learned, but they begin to light the way.
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