New Zealand Maori quality improvement in health care: lessons from an ideal type

S. A. Buetow
2004 International Journal for Quality in Health Care  
There is no single best approach to quality improvement. Quality improvement has been adapted from its predominantly Japanese origins to form distinct, hybrid systems embedded in national cultures. These systems have seldom been studied despite their potential internationally to inform the local management of health care organizations. This article suggests six lessons from an 'ideal type' of one such system, New Zealand Maori quality improvement in health care. Mapped against 'mainstream'
more » ... pts of quality improvement, the lessons are to: emulate the character of leaders in health care; encourage 'cultural governance'; operate the health care organization as a 'family'; move forward with eyes on the past; foster spiritual health; and respect everything for itself. These lessons support a global struggle by indigenous peoples to have their national cultures reflected in programmes to improve their health care, and have potential relevance to mainstream services. By increasing cultural competence, responsiveness to indigenous health needs, and awareness of insights from another culture, the lessons reveal opportunities to improve quality by incorporating aspects of a Maori ideal type.
doi:10.1093/intqhc/mzh060 pmid:15375103 fatcat:3xqpohuuvbailpsfxkq2vstwzm