Delivering Excellence in Health and Social Care: Quality, Excellence, and Performance Measurement

By Max Moullin | Go to book overview

CHAPTER four
The Excellence Model

The Excellence Model was launched in 1991 by the European Foundation for Quality Management (EFQM), an organization formed in 1988 by 14 chief executives of leading European companies. The model was designed to enable organizations to assess themselves against a set of criteria for excellence and to use this self-assessment to identify and implement breakthrough improvements. The model also provides a framework for the European and UK Quality Awards, but the main aim is to stimulate quality improvement throughout Europe.

The model has been developed both for the public and private sectors. Originally known as the Business Excellence Model, it was redesigned in 1999 and the main reason that the model changed its name to the Excellence Model was to make it clear that it applied to all organizations. In the UK public sector it has been applied to local authorities, health and social care, schools, universities, all the police forces, the fire service, most central government departments and many voluntary sector organizations. There has been a Public Sector Award since 1995 and the model is particularly relevant to the modernizing agenda in public services. The model has received praise from many areas of health and social care.


What is excellence?

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then is not an act but a habit.

(Aristotle)

Before discussing the model in detail, it is useful to examine exactly what we mean by the term 'excellence'. In fact, excellence as a term suffers from many of the ambiguities associated with the word 'quality'. Perhaps this is not

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