Objectives: To assess the impact of total quality management (TQM) and organizational culture on a comprehensive set of endpoints of care for coronary artery bypass graft surgery (CABG) patients, including risk-adjusted adverse outcomes, clinical efficiency, patient satisfaction, functional health status, and cost of care.
Methods: Prospective cohort study of 3,045 eligible CABG patients from 16 hospitals using risk-adjusted clinical outcomes, functional health status, patient satisfaction, and cost measures. Implementation of TQM was measured by a previously validated instrument based on the Baldridge national quality award criteria. Organizational culture was measured by a previously validated 20-item instrument. Generalized estimating equations were used to control for potential selection bias, repeated measures, and intraclass correlation.
Results: A 2- to 4-fold difference in all major clinical CABG care endpoints was observed among the 16 hospitals, but little of this variation was associated with TQM or organizational culture. Patients receiving CABG from hospitals with high TQM scores were more satisfied with their nursing care (P = 0.005) but were more likely to have lengths of stay >10 days (P = 0.0003). A supportive group culture was associated with shorter postoperative intubation times (P = 0.01) but longer operating room times (P = 0.004). A supportive group culture was also associated with higher patient physical (P = 0.005) and mental (P = 0.01) functional health status scores 6 months after CABG.
Conclusions: There was little effect of TQM and organizational culture on multiple endpoints of care for CABG patients. There is a need to examine further the relationships among individual professional skills and motivations, group and microsystem team processes, specifically tailored interventions, and organization-wide culture, decision support processes, and incentives. Assessing the impact of such multifaceted approaches is an important area for further research.