Quality improvement and measurement: what non-executive directors need to know

An overview of quality improvement and measurement for non-executive directors of health boards.

Appendix 2d - Showing data and variation over time

Data is often aggregated and presented over long time periods, yet shown as discrete points in time. If there are not enough points in time this can lead to poor interpretation. Presenting data continuously over time can provide a more accurate basis for decision making.

Run charts

Run charts are line graphs where a measure is plotted over time with the median also shown. Changes made to a process are also often marked on the graph so that they can be connected with the impact on the process.

Example of an annotated run chart

Average length of stay ( ALOS) in Intensive Care Unit (days)

Average length of stay (ALOS) in Intensive Care Unit (days)

Courtesy of Professor Kevin Rooney, University of the West of Scotland and NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde.

More information on run charts can be found at: http://www.healthcareimprovementscotland.org/previous_resources/implementation_support/guide_to_using_run_charts.aspx


Back to top