Keeping Current

ASQ’s Economic Case Study Moves Forward

ASQ volunteers have been contacting high level executives to obtain information for the Society’s economic case for quality report. Pilot tests in Pittsburgh and Milwaukee ended in November, and the information is currently being analyzed.

Initial takeaways reveal the following:

  • Executives are interested in looking at specific results that show a demonstrable contribution to the bottom line or a significant increase in productivity or decrease in warranty work, rework or scrap.
  • Executives have very mixed feelings about Six Sigma.
  • Executives in all markets (manufacturing, services, healthcare and education) are willing to listen if there is a compelling story.
  • Case studies need to be short and to the point, with evident results.

Following completion of the initial set of interviews and analysis of the information, economic case materials will be created for all members to use.


Documents Issued To Harmonize Conformity Assessment

Two reference documents for conformity assessment recently released by the International Organization for Standardization and the International Electrotechnical Commission are designed to reduce technical barriers to trade and prevent the emergence of new barriers.

ISO/IEC 17000:2004, Conformity Assessment—Vocabulary and General Principles, collects and compiles all terms and definitions applicable to conformity assessment into one glossary type document in English, French and Russian.

The second document, ISO/IEC Guide 60:2004, Conformity Assessment—Code of Good Practice, recommends good practices for all elements of conformity assessment, including normative documents, bodies, systems, schemes and results. It is for individuals and groups providing conformity assessment services.

Copies are available from sales@iso.org or, in the United States, from the American National Standards Institute at http://webstore.ansi.org/ansidocstore/default.asp.


New Tool Offered To Measure And Improve Patient Safety

The U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) has announced a survey tool to help hospitals and health systems evaluate employee attitudes about patient safety.

The Hospital Survey on Patient Safety Culture was released by AHRQ in partnership with Premier Inc., the Department of Defense and the American Hospital Assn. The tool includes a survey guide, the survey and a feedback report template on which hospitals can enter data to produce customized feedback reports for their management and staff.

The survey was pilot tested with more than 1,400 em-ployees from 21 U.S. hospitals to ensure understanding and relevancy to patient safety in a hospital. The survey can be found online at http://www.ahrq.gov/qual/
hospculture. Printed copies can be ordered by calling 800-358-9295 or e-mailing ahrqpubs@ahrq.gov.


Schools To Audit Efforts Against NCLB Requirements

A group of ASQ volunteers led by Craig Johnson, past chair of the Education Division/Forum, will present the concepts of auditing to school leaders in 30 schools/districts to help them understand how auditing can help them manage their efforts in meeting the requirements of the U.S. No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act.

The program will take place from January through October 2005. If it is successful, ASQ will eventually involve all 250 ASQ sections in helping their local schools meet NCLB requirements. Staff at the U.S. Department of Education has expressed interest in following ASQ’s progress and seeing how the schools respond.


RAB Merges With Quality Society of Australasia

The U.S. based Registrar Accreditation Board (RAB) merged with the Quality Society of Australasia (QSA) on Jan. 1 to create RABQSA International. Principal offices will be in Milwaukee and Sydney, with joint venture locations in Tokyo; Taipei, Taiwan; Hanoi, Vietnam; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; and Auckland, New Zealand.

A major impetus for the merger was the release of the new standard for the personnel certification industry, ISO/IEC 17024:2003—General Requirements for Bodies Operating Certification of Persons.

For additional information on RABQSA International, accredited certification and the organization’s transition plan, contact Toni Smith at tsmith@qsanet.com.


C-SPAN Series on Knowledge Management Planned


The John W. Kluge Center at the Library of Congress is offering a series of evening lectures on managing knowledge and creativity in digitally networked communications.

The 90-minute programs will be aired live and will run through March 2005. An e-mail address, digital@loc.gov, offers viewers the opportunity to ask questions of participants.

The program topics include blogging, the challenges of selecting pertinent internet archive content, interdisciplinary convergence, the effect on language of reading on the internet, copyright issues and implications for the creation and distribution of knowledge.

Additional information on the programs and their schedules can be found at http://www.c-span.org/

14 I JANUARY 2005 I www.asq.org


Two Manufacturers, Business School and Hospital Get Baldrige Awards

President Bush and Commerce Secretary Don Evans have named the 2004 recipients of the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award:

• The Bama Companies, Tulsa, OK, manufacturing category.

• Texas Nameplate Co., Dallas, small business category.

• Kenneth W. Monfort College of Business, Greeley, CO, education category.

• Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Hamilton, Hamilton, NJ, healthcare category.

This is the second time Texas Nameplate has been a recipient. The small manufacturer’s first award was in 1998.

The awards are managed by the National Institute of Standards and Technology with administrative support from ASQ. They are expected to be presented early this year during a ceremony in Washington, DC.

For details, go to http://www.nist.gov/public_affairs/



Over the course of its 12 years, the National Quality Education Conference (NQEC) has become one of ASQ’s largest—second in attendance only to its annual World Conference.

Crista Kautz, education market development administrator, believes the strength of the conference shows education is ready to take hold of quality practices.

Until recently, NQEC breakout sessions generally focused on content for administrators, and during the last few years, more content for classroom teachers was introduced. This year, however, all stakeholder needs were addressed with sessions for school board members as well as teachers, administrators and higher education professors.

The final ASQ Koalaty Kid Conference was held in 2003, but Koalaty Kid was visibly present at the 2004 NQEC, with a Koalaty Kid track and a series of school tours.


Koalaty Kid Sessions

One session at this year’s NQEC was presented by six teachers, led by Cindy Arkebauer and Carol Schoening, from Rock Island School District in Illinois. All six are Koalaty Kid trainers, and they and other Rock Island teachers contributed to a book called Quality Across the Curriculum—Integrating Quality Tools and PDSA With Standards K-5.

The book incorporates state standards, plan-do-study-act (PDSA) and other quality tools into their favorite lesson plans. The book also includes a CD-ROM with the plans and objectives for each.

Quality Across the Curriculum, edited by Jay Marino and Ann Haggerty Raines, was published by ASQ Quality Press
in 2004 and is available at http://qualitypress.asq.org.

Another session focused on how McCandless Elementary in Hutchinson, KS, is meeting the requirements of the No Child Left Behind Act using Koalaty Kid tools. Now in their second year of the program, the teachers at McCandless aim to one day receive the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award.

One way they’re working toward their goal is by having the children in their classrooms use quality tools, such as PDSA, basic and expanded lotus diagrams, flowcharts and tree, affinity and fishbone diagrams. The teachers are also using the tools to benefit the school.

For information about the conference, keynote speakers and sessions, visit the NQEC page at http://www. asq. org/ed/conferences/nqec/index.html.


NQEC Second in Attendance; Koalaty Kid Plays Role


Leapfrog Group Releases Hospital Quality and Safety Survey

The Leapfrog Group, a business group seeking improvements in the safety, quality and affordability of healthcare, has released the Leap-frog Hospital Quality and Safety Survey, a national rating system.

More than 1,000 hospitals reported the following in response to the survey:

• Eight in 10 have implemented procedures to avoid wrong site surgeries.

• Seven in 10 require a pharmacist to review all medication orders before medication is given to patients.

• Seven in 10 do not have an explicit protocol to ensure adequate nursing staff or a policy to check with patients to ensure they understand the risks of their procedures.

• Six in 10 lack procedures for preventing patient malnutrition.

• Five in 10 do not have procedures to prevent bed sores.

• Four in 10 lack policies requiring workers to wash their hands with disinfectant before and after seeing a patient.

The survey collects data on hospitals’ progress toward implementing practices in four categories: computerized physician order entry, intensive care unit physician staff, evidence based hospital referral and the Leapfrog Quality Index of 27 safe practice areas.

Each hospital’s results, updated monthly with data from additional hospitals, can be found at http://www. leapfroggroup.org.

16 I JANUARY 2005 I www.asq.org

The FACE of




Name: Kenneth W. Kizer, M.D.

Residence: Bi-coastal—in Washington, DC, and northern California, but on the road more than at either of those locations.

Education: Doctorate in medicine from the University of California, Los Angeles, with further medical studies at the University of California, San Francisco, and in the U.S. Navy.

Current job: President and CEO of the National Quality Forum, a Washington, DC, based private, nonprofit voluntary consensus healthcare standards setting organization.

Previous job: Undersecretary for Health in the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

First quality experience: Introduced to quality principles and systems thinking during his public health/epidemiology studies in the Navy, but has focused on quality management throughout his career.

ASQ activities: Joined ASQ just a year ago.

Recent honor: Received the Institute of Medicine’s Gustav O. Leinhard Award, which recognizes creative or pioneering efforts toward improving personal health services. The award specifically cited his initiation and oversight of sweeping reforms of the Department of Veterans Affairs’ healthcare system, which included concerted initiatives aimed at reducing medical errors and improving healthcare quality for the nation’s veterans.

Personal: Married with two grown daughters.

Favorite ways to relax: Unusual travel; outdoor sports such as SCUBA diving (most recently in Papua, New Guinea), trekking, whitewater activities and nature photography.

Quality quote: If we would systematically apply what we currently know about quality management to healthcare, it has the potential to save more lives and otherwise improve health more than any foreseeable technological or scientific breakthrough of the next 20 years, including finding cures for diabetes, heart disease or cancer.-

18 I JANUARY 2005 I www.asq.org

ASQ News

HEALTHCARE INSTITUTE ADDS PRESENTERS Two additional presenters have been named for the Quality Institute in Healthcare Feb. 14-16 in New Orleans. They are Gary Yates, M.D., a recipient of the American Hospital Assn. (AHA) Quest for Quality Award, and Don E. Detmer, M.D., president and CEO of the American Medical Informatics Assn. The program will feature four- and eight-hour courses. Sponsors, along with ASQ, are the AHA and the American Society for Healthcare Risk Management. Registration information and program updates can be found at http://qihc.asq.org.


SOFTWARE QUALITY CONFERENCE MARCH 21-23 The 14th annual ASQ International Conference on Software Quality will be held in Orlando, FL, from March 21-23. A special aerospace software quality panel will be among 24 sessions. For more information, go to http://www.asq.org/softwareforum or call 800-248-1946 or 414-272-8575.


GREENFIELD GETS HUNTER AWARD The Statistics Division presented its 2004 William G. Hunter Award to Tony Greenfield. Greenfield was a journalist specializing in technical and scientific reporting and feature writing until he was 34, when he became interested in and began working toward a degree in statistics. President of the European Network for Business and Industrial Statistics in 2002-2003 and a fellow of the Royal Statistical Society, Greenfield is the first European to win the award.


BOARD NOMINEES NAMED Nominees for ASQ’s Board of Directors have been named by the Nominating Committee. They are Ronald D. Atkinson of General Motors, president-elect; Grace L. Duffy of Management and Performance Systems, vice president; Connie R. Faylor of Ben Franklin Technology Partners, treasurer; Kay Kendall of Sun Microsystems Inc., national director, and Bob King of GOAL/QPC, national director. Unless additional candidacies are announced through petition, these candidates will be announced and ratified at the annual business meeting on May 15 just prior to ASQ’s World Conference (formerly the Annual Quality Congress) in Seattle May 16-18.


EACH ONE REACH ONE WINNERS NAMED October proved a busy month for recruiting members, who added more than 500 new faces and voices to the Society through ASQ’s Each One Reach One (member-get-a-member) program. Jose Rodriguez Perez of Toa Alta, Puerto Rico, recruited 57 new members. In doing so, he joins the Century Club, which recognizes individuals who have sponsored more than 100 new members through the program. Andrew Duma of Ada, MI, was chosen as the program’s random drawing winner after sponsoring one member. Both received Quality Press coupons. For more information on the Each One Reach One program, go to http://www.asq.org/eoro.

Web Watch


Looking for quality related websites? Here are some sites found by the Quality Progress staff or readers.




The National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to improve the quality of healthcare. This website features understandable and free information for employers and consumers. The organization also generates feedback that helps physicians, health plans and others identify areas for improvement and make changes to improve the quality of patient care.




Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and Quality Improvement Organizations have established Medicare Quality Improvement Community (MedQIC), a publicly used website, to support quality improvement in nursing homes, home health agencies, hospitals and physician offices. Users need to provide personal information to register. Registration is free, and once registered users can access their own personalized MedQIC page.



The Center for Quality Management (CQM) is an international nonprofit organization that offers educational programs, advisory services, research initiatives and networking activities. CQM is built on a foundation of total quality management and addresses the three areas it believes are critical to long-term business success: planning, operations and change management. The CQM Journal is free.



Free information, including articles on statistical topics, is offered on this commercial website. Topics include statistical quality analysis, basic statistical tools and design and analysis of experiments.


More websites. Links to and descriptions of these sites and past Web Watch sites can be found in the cumulative Web Watch listing online. Click on the magazine cover at http://www.asq.org.

Found an interesting quality site? If you come across a noncommercial site that could be useful to other quality professionals, e-mail it to vfunk@asq.org.

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GENERAL ELECTRIC (GE) has retained the number one slot for the seventh year running in the “Financial Times/PricewaterhouseCoopers World’s Most Respected Companies” rankings. Nine of the top 10 companies are based in the United States. Microsoft was second, and Toyota came in at third. Bill Gates of Microsoft is considered the world’s most respected business leader for the third year, with former GE chair Jack Welch second and Carlos Ghosn of Nissan third.



W.J. YOUDEN AWARD NOMINATIONS are being sought by the American Statistical Assn. The $1,000 award recognizes published materials that make contributions to the design or analysis of interlaboratory tests or describe ingenious approaches to the planning and evaluation of data from such tests. Six copies of the publication and six copies of a supporting nomination letter should be sent by March 15 to Phillip R. Scinto, Lubrizol Corp., 29400 Lakeland Blvd., Drop #152A, Wickliffe, OH 44092-2298.


THE EIGHTH QMOD CONFERENCE is planned for June 29 to July 1 in Palermo, Italy. The Quality Manage-ment and Organizational Development Conference is expected to draw about 150 to 200 participants and will cover both hard and soft aspects of quality management. For details, go to http://web.dtpm.unipa.it/qmod. Ab-stracts of paper proposals are due Jan. 15 and should be sent to sumi.park@eki. liu.se or qmodpapers@dtpm.unipa.it.


THE NIKKEI WEEKLY, a Japanese publication, reported the Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport removed ISO 9001 certification from its requirements for contractors bidding on public works projects. This information was in one of the recent articles posted on Quality News Today, ASQ’s electronic news service for members at http://www.asq.org.


LIMITING MEDICAL INTERNS’ WORK to 16 consecutive hours can substantially reduce serious medical errors in intensive care units, according to two complementary studies published in the Oct. 28, 2004, issue of the New England Journal of Medicine. For more details on sleep deprivation and safety, go to http://workhours. bwh.harvard.edu.


ASTM INTERNATIONAL, in cooperation with the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, American Petroleum Institute and CSA America, has formed the Con-sortium on Standards and Conform-ity Assessment and will establish an office in Beijing early this year. The consortium was awarded $400,000 from the U.S. Commerce Department to establish the office.


REVISED VERSIONS OF ISO 14001 AND ISO 14004 environmental management standards have been published by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). ISO says the new standards are more compatible with each other and with the ISO 9001 quality management standard.


22 I JANUARY 2005 I www.asq.org



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