Article Swedish Veterinary Journal No 15, 2016. Authors: Ulrika Grönlund, DVM, PhD, associate professor of infection control, Group Medical Quality Manager, AniCura, Stein Istre Thoresen, DVM, PhD, professor of clinical pathology, Group Medical Quality and Development Director, AniCura and Anneli Bjöersdorff, DVM, PhD, Group Laboratory Manager.
Last year, AniCura began a systematic quality initiative to improve patient safety within veterinary care. The initiative is conducted in nine focus areas whose aims include ensuring the prudent use of antibiotics and good infection control. 'Soft' values such as good professional communication and effective incident management are also included.
Veterinary clinics and animal hospitals have long worked individually with the quality concept, but with great variations in goals and the level of commitment. In 2015, AniCura's group management decided that the quality of veterinary medicine should enjoy a single focus, and in the autumn a number of senior veterinarians were hired to set up AniCura's quality programme. Among other things, initial discussions focused on the question – what is veterinary medical quality? Although not an easy question to answer, it soon emerged that patient safety and medical results should be the guiding principles in the quality programme dubbed QualiCura. The programme is international, i.e. it covers all of AniCura's 150 animal hospitals and veterinary clinics across Europe.
The goal of QualiCura is for every animal hospital and veterinary clinic within AniCura to work systematically with veterinary quality improvements in areas that are important for patient safety and medical results. In short, it means pets coming to AniCura should receive care and treatment that follow the latest scientific findings and that the risk of infection during a pet’s stay should be minimized.