A7: How norms and guidelines hinder quality in Dutch and German hospitals – Towards parsimony in guideline development and smartness in implementation

Thursday, 3rd May
11:00-12:15

External expectations to deliver care according to guidelines are overstretched and contra-productive. Consequently, several hospitals are struggling to meet these demands. We argue that there are better and more efficient ways to deliver excellent care to patients. Based on different stakeholder perspectives, the presenters will demonstrate in a provocative and interactive session why the contemporary cycle of guideline development and implementation has lost its effectiveness. Several dilemmas induced by this practice will be introduced in rapid-fire-presentations and possible solutions discussed with active contributions from the audience.

After this session, participants will be able to:

  • Understand the importance of guidelines, their benefits and their problems, including the current pitfalls and dilemma’s concerning the use of guidelines

  • Think critically about guidelines: how this can hinder patient safety and shared decision making

  • Understand dilemmas of hospitals to implement guidelines, how to prioritize in the enormous amount of guidelines and how to meet demands of external surveillance


Doris Voit, Officer for quality assurance and quality management for German hospitals, Deutsche Krankenhausgesellschaft, German Hospital Federation, Berlin; Germany
Louise Blume, Policy officer at Dutch Hospital & PhD student; The Netherlands