Judit Hübscher-Stettler, you are the Health Promotion and Prevention Officer for the canton of Thurgau. How important is quality in health promotion and prevention in your canton?
Hübscher-Stettler: Quality is very important. One of the guiding principles in Thurgau's health promotion concept requires health promotion programmes and projects to comply with recognized quality criteria and follow performance-oriented models that have been tried and tested in practice. In light of dwindling resources, quality assurance will become even more important: if available resources are to be utilized effectively and efficiently, the quality and effectiveness of the various programmes, projects and services must be checked and ensured.
How is this put into practice?
Hübscher-Stettler: First of all, we need to create an understanding among decision-makers for the framework conditions necessary to producing quality. Service providers also need to be made more aware of the issue of quality, although we must bear in mind that they are not all on the same level in this respect: some organizations are still dealing with quality in terms of their structures and processes while others can already begin to focus on the quality of their results.
Where do you meet with resistance and how do you deal with it?
Hübscher-Stettler: The challenge here is to provide the various stakeholder groups with services which meet the different quality requirements using the available resources. In other words, we need to demand and promote quality in relation to what is practically feasible and affordable. This is a process that can be furthered by applying practical and practice-oriented tools as well as a sense of proportion regarding quality demands.
Doris Grauwiler, as the Head of the Health Promotion and Prevention Unit at Perspektive Thurgau, you are currently involved in the combined implementation of the two quality tools quint-essenz and module X QuaTheDA in your organization. Where do you see the potential of combining these two quality systems?
Grauwiler: The biggest potential of the combination lies in the area of conception, development and implementation of services (QuaTheDA module X/2). Through its requirements, QuaTheDA defines the framework, as it were, while quint-essenz provides the content through its criteria and instruments.
What will be the biggest challenges in this respect?
Grauwiler: The biggest challenge is the fact that health promotion and prevention do not appear as separate areas in QuaTheDA and "Health promotion, prevention, early detection and early intervention" is treated as an area of activity within addiction support. The question is therefore whether QuaTheDA accords the area of health promotion and prevention enough latitude and development potential.
What recommendations or tips you can give to institutions wanting to secure and further the quality of their projects?
Grauwiler: We are right at the beginning. We are focusing on quality assurance for health promotion projects as a self-contained area and are then trying to link this to QuaTheDA in such a way that these requirements are also met. We are confident it will work because we are aligning our core task with the project quality criteria and tools of quint-essenz. A more or less systematic application of quint-essenz throughout all stages of a project, starting at the project rationale through to planning, implementation and evaluation, provides a professional foundation for projects and also fulfils the QuaTheDA requirements. For interdisciplinary organizations such as Perspektive Thurgau, which is already certified in the area of addiction, this combination is a viable path to follow.