Improving healthcare quality in the United States healthcare system: A scientific management approach

Soumya Upadhyay, William Opoku-Agyeman


The US healthcare system has been facing pressures from stakeholders to reduce costs and improve quality. The purpose of this paper is to develop a conceptual model to illustrate the approaches used in healthcare quality management (Continuous Quality Improvement/Total Quality Management, Lean, and Six Sigma) weaved into the underlying framework of scientific management theory. This paper employs scientific management theory to explain the healthcare quality tenets that influence the quality of care in our healthcare organizations. The father of scientific management, Frederick Taylor, and other key contributors collectively created scientific management principles, which are widely used for quality improvement purposes both in the engineering and the healthcare field. Healthcare quality is also discussed with examples of the application of scientific management principles. Shared themes between scientific management principles and healthcare quality tenets, as given in CQI/TQM, Six Sigma-Lean, and Donabedian Model, were developed. To understand the three pillars of quality (structure, process, outcome) in relation to the underpinnings of scientific management principles, we incorporated insights of scientific management theory into Donabedian’s healthcare quality model. It is recommended that selection of personnel play a more significant role among human resources practices in organizations; strategy formulation must include a careful assessment of organizations’ strengths and weaknesses with regard to continuous quality improvement, with organizations striving to achieve standardization to attain efficiency and reduce costs.

Full Text:




  • There are currently no refbacks.

Journal of Hospital Administration

ISSN 1927-6990(Print)   ISSN 1927-7008(Online)

Copyright © Sciedu Press
To make sure that you can receive messages from us, please add the '' domain to your e-mail 'safe list'. If you do not receive e-mail in your 'inbox', check your 'bulk mail' or 'junk mail' folders.