Background and objectives:
Psoriasis (Pso) is a common skin condition characterized by a strong psychosocial impact, and is nowadays accepted as a systemic immune-mediated inflammatory disease. Diagnostic–Therapeutic Care Pathways (DTCPs) represent a predefined sequence of diagnostic, therapeutic, and assistance activities that integrate the participation of several specialists to obtain, for each patient, the correct diagnosis and thus the most appropriate therapy. A DTCP was validated in our dermatology clinic (AOU Maggiore della Carità, Novara, Italy). The validation process included the detailed elaboration of a protocol of diagnosis, staging of care, therapies, and follow-up of the patient with Pso. The formalization and adaptation of our DTCP resulted in ISO 9001: 2015 certification in May 2019. Materials and methods:
This process involved several stages, including analysis of context and the identification of (i) targets, (ii) indicators, and (iii) service providers. The evaluation was based on a cohort of over 200 patients affected by moderate to severe Pso, who were treated and followed-up at our institution from September 2017 to April 2019. Results:
The ISO 9001:2015 quality certification process allowed us to identify our weaknesses, i.e., the long waiting times for the first visit and the reduced physician–patient ratio, but also our strengths, such as the commitment to clinical research, effective collaboration with other specialists, the efficient use of technological and human resources, and attention to ensuring patient follow-up. Conclusions:
In qualifying for and achieving the ISO Quality Management System (QMS) certification we were heartened to realize that our basic methodology and approach were fit for purpose. The implementation of the ISO QMS helped us to reorganize our priorities by placing the patient at the center of the process and raising awareness that Pso is not just a skin disease.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited