Quality Improvement Reports

The purpose of quality improvement projects are to address local problems through the implementation of a systematic process for targeted change. The goal of the quality improvement report is to disseminate detailed information on the steps taken throughout the implementation process to benefit the athletic training community. We welcome submissions using any quality improvement model. 

Title: The title should be formatted to include “quality improvement” and the area of focus. Titles should be no longer than 15 words and the heading “title” does not need to appear in the submission.

Content Focus: All submissions will be required to designate an Athletic Training Research Agenda Priority. The Athletic Training Research Agenda can be found here. The research priorities are Health Care Competency, Vitality of The Profession, Health Professions Education, Health Care Economics, and Health Information Technology.

Abstract: A 300-word unstructured abstract should accompany your submission.

Video Abstract (Optional): A Video Abstract is an accompanying feature for research articles that should attract viewers to the scientific paper. The aim of the Video Abstract is to promote the highlights of your study. Therefore, it should include the main conclusions and results of the paper, but it should also add something to the written paper. Ideally, it should engage viewers by telling a story, for example by starting with a particular finding, a question, or a distinctive topic around which the story will unfold. Your emphasis must be on ways of capturing the attention of your audience, encouraging them to read your paper. The video abstracts will be posted on the manuscript homepage and social media. Please provide your Twitter handle (personal or organization), if available, in the submission of your video abstract.

Scope of the Problem: Describe your current model and identify the local problem you would like to address. A root cause analysis should be detailed to identify potential sources of the problem. 

Context: Provide context to the problem through a review of relevant literature.

Needs Assessment: Establish the outcomes data that led to understanding that the identified issue is real and measurable.

Project Aim: This section should be a concise, 2-3 sentence explanation of the project aim. What are you trying to accomplish? What changes do you propose to make that will result in an improvement on the outcomes? 

Project Design: Describe the intervention. To align with the federal definition of quality improvement, these interventions may be novel to your local facility, but they should also be rooted in relevant literature. Describe the measurable outcomes you are hoping to see with an emphasis on continual solution development. Be sure to include any benchmarks and criteria for success of the project. Please include the timeline for implementation, collaborating parties, technology needed, and any other pertinent information related to project design. 

Implementation: Describe the actual implementation of the project, including the steps taken to apply the intervention and measure the outcomes. This may include points where breakdowns have occurred, “work-a-rounds” that have developed, variations to the protocol, and duplicate or unnecessary steps.  

Results: Provide a summary of the results. This should include a comparison to the baseline results and if multiple cycles of data collection have occurred or multiple interventions were applied, comparisons should be drawn between each cycle. Detail what steps were taken as a result of the findings (adopt, adapt, abandon, etc.). Contextualize how your results relate to your expected outcomes and previous literature.

Limitations: List any limitations to the project, even if they are facility-specific. 

Implications for Clinical Practice: Describe the clinically meaningful results discovered through the project. Hypothesize how the findings could be translated or applied in similar organizations or systems. 

Extended Methods and Data (Optional): This section should be used to complement the implementation and results, as needed. In this section, please provide a detailed explanation of procedures and processes, interventions, or advanced statistical analysis used in the project. 

References: List all references used to support the case at the conclusion of the column. References should follow the format specified by the AMA Manual of Style, 11th edition.