Reflections on Quality and importance of Accreditation  at this time of crisis

In the past week we have celebrated two important days. Though not planned to be together, the coincidence is fortuitous, as they reflect the vitality of the work we do.

The World What Matters to Me day celebrates the importance of placing people at the heart of what we do. One may assume that this should be a given, something that comes naturally. However, it goes further than the usual care that is provided. What matters to most people is all about the little things, the kindness they desire when they are ill and feeling safe and confident in the quality of care received. At this time of the COVID pandemic it is easy to forget this when one is trying to save lives and often in very difficult conditions. Also, What Matters to Me also includes the desires of the providers of care. They want to provide high quality care at all times, while feeling safe themselves.

The second celebration is World Accreditation Day which celebrates the importance of aiming to be the best in class, to exceed the minimum standards of care and to continually improve. The External Evaluation of standards impacts on every aspect of our lives. This year, the focus is on food safety which is vital for the safety of our health. We need to see this within the context of the way we live now and how we will live in the future.

In healthcare the setting of standards and the evaluation against those standards is a vital part of the quality and safety initiatives across the globe. This is led by ISQua and the ISQua External Evaluation Association, which sets the standards for healthcare quality. We believe that without a high standard of care we can never give people what really matters to them.

As we move to the post pandemic world, we need to ask what kind of healthcare it is that we want to deliver. We will have found new ways of working, as well as things that are difficult to manage and others that are now feasible, such as telemedicine and virtual consulting. All of these will require standards for quality and safety, and we will work with organisations such as IQG  Accreditation Service to deliver quality care to all who need it.

We all entered the healthcare profession to serve the people who need our care. As we emerge into the changed world, we need to continually improve what we do, learn and share – and remember that quality is what matters to us and to the people who receive care

Peter Lachman


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