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Accounting for quality: on the relationship between accounting and quality improvement in healthcare

Overview of attention for article published in BMC Health Services Research, April 2015
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About this Attention Score

  • In the top 25% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (87th percentile)
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age and source (89th percentile)

Mentioned by

twitter
20 tweeters

Citations

dimensions_citation
24 Dimensions

Readers on

mendeley
87 Mendeley
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Title
Accounting for quality: on the relationship between accounting and quality improvement in healthcare
Published in
BMC Health Services Research, April 2015
DOI 10.1186/s12913-015-0769-4
Pubmed ID
Authors

Dane Pflueger

Abstract

Accounting-that is, standardized measurement, public reporting, performance evaluation and managerial control-is commonly seen to provide the core infrastructure for quality improvement in healthcare. Yet, accounting successfully for quality has been a problematic endeavor, often producing dysfunctional effects. This has raised questions about the appropriate role for accounting in achieving quality improvement. This paper contributes to this debate by contrasting the specific way in which accounting is understood and operationalized for quality improvement in the UK National Health Service (NHS) with findings from the broadly defined 'social studies of accounting' literature and illustrative examples. This paper highlights three significant differences between the way that accounting is understood to operate in the dominant health policy discourse and recent healthcare reforms, and in the social studies of accounting literature. It shows that accounting does not just find things out, but makes them up. It shows that accounting is not simply a matter of substance, but of style. And it shows that accounting does not just facilitate, but displaces, control. The illumination of these differences in the way that accounting is conceptualized helps to diagnose why accounting interventions often fail to produce the quality improvements that were envisioned. This paper concludes that accounting is not necessarily incompatible with the ambition of quality improvement, but that it would need to be understood and operationalized in new ways in order to contribute to this end. Proposals for this new way of advancing accounting are discussed. They include the cultivation of overlapping and even conflicting measures of quality, the evaluation of accounting regimes in terms of what they do to practice, and the development of distinctively skeptical calculative cultures.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 20 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 87 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
United Kingdom 1 1%
Unknown 86 99%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Master 22 25%
Student > Ph. D. Student 12 14%
Researcher 8 9%
Student > Doctoral Student 7 8%
Lecturer 5 6%
Other 17 20%
Unknown 16 18%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Business, Management and Accounting 20 23%
Medicine and Dentistry 13 15%
Social Sciences 12 14%
Nursing and Health Professions 9 10%
Economics, Econometrics and Finance 3 3%
Other 11 13%
Unknown 19 22%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 13. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 02 September 2015.
All research outputs
#2,256,112
of 21,463,092 outputs
Outputs from BMC Health Services Research
#924
of 7,144 outputs
Outputs of similar age
#31,277
of 244,216 outputs
Outputs of similar age from BMC Health Services Research
#18
of 163 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 21,463,092 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done well and is in the 89th percentile: it's in the top 25% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 7,144 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a little more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 7.4. This one has done well, scoring higher than 87% of its peers.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 244,216 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has done well, scoring higher than 87% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 163 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has done well, scoring higher than 89% of its contemporaries.