Quality of pathology services: new strategic directions required.

International journal of health care quality assurance

PubMedID: 24003751

Isouard G. Quality of pathology services: new strategic directions required. Int J Health Care Qual Assur. 2013;26(6):510-21.
PURPOSE
The purpose of this paper is to discuss the challenges faced in Australia to maintain and sustain quality in pathology services, and present new strategic directions to address such challenges.

DESIGN/METHODOLOGY/APPROACH
The paper is a review of the literature on pathology services and its quality of delivery and emerging issues.

FINDINGS
Major issues are emerging in pathology services which threaten to impact on the quality of future service delivery. These issues include workforce shortages, growth in inappropriate testing, advancing technology, rural and remote region servicing, and a negative image of the sector. New strategic directions are shown to be necessary in terms of workforce planning and addressing the escalation of new technology and innovation. In order to sustain quality of services, a significant change from current practice is recommended, with strong leadership as the change driver.

PRACTICAL IMPLICATIONS
This paper highlights the potential impact of emerging issues on future pathology-service quality. Significant implications for service delivery and patient care quality are reviewed.

ORIGINALITY/VALUE
This paper provides valuable information on current strategic and planning issues impacting on pathology services. It provides new solutions from the perspective of leadership of health and health services.