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Paper Topic:

DATA FLOW DIAGRAMS IN THE HEALTH CARE FIELD

DATA FLOW DIAGRAMS AND THE HEALTH-CARE INDUSTRY

History

The dataflow diagram is one of the most commonly used systems-modeling tools , particularly for operational systems in which the functions of the system are of paramount importance and more complex than the data that the system manipulates . DFDs were first used in the software engineering field as a notation for studying systems design issues (e .g , in early structured design books and articles such as (Stevens Myers , and Constantine . 1974 (Yourdon and Constantine , 1975 (Myers 1975 , et al . In turn , the notation had been

borrowed from earlier s on graph theory , and it continues to be used as a convenient notation by software engineers concerned with direct implementation of models of user requirements (Yourdon , 1988

Advantages

The Data Flow Diagram (DFD ) method is an element of object-oriented analysis and is widely used . Some advantages include (Le Vie , 2000

Use of DFDs promotes quick and relatively easy project code development

DFDs are easy to learn with their few-and-simple-to-understand symbols (once you decide on a particular DFD model

The syntax used for DFDs is simple , employing English nouns , or noun-adjective-verb constructs

Good for functional decomposition

Disadvantages

DFDs for large systems can be cumbersome , difficult to translate , and read , and be time-consuming in their construction

Data flow can be confusing to programmers

DFDs are useless without the pre-requisite detail

Different DFD models employ different symbols (circles and rectangles for example , for entities

Can 't distinguish data and control signals

Current Uses in the Health Care System

Using Data Flow Diagrams to identify and prevent product process problems before they occur (in health care processes from prescription up to and including administration of chemotherapy (vincristine ) in the pediatric oncology inpatient setting

An Example

The VHA , with assistance from the director of risk assessment and loss prevention at Tenet HealthSystem , developed Healthcare Failure Mode and Effect Analysis (HFMEA ) as "a systematic approach to identify and prevent product and process problems before they occur

Five key steps are involved in conducting an HFMEA analysis

Define the HFMEA . This should include a clear definition of the process to be studied

Assemble the HFMEA team . The personnel should be multidisciplinary and include subject matter experts and an adviser

Graphically describe the process . Develop a flow diagram number each process step identify the area of the process to focus on identify all sub-processes create a flow diagram of the sub-process

Conduct a failure analysis . List all possible failure modes under the key sub-process determine the severity and probability of each potential failure mode use a Decision Tree to determine if the failure mode warrants further action list all failure mode causes where the decision has been made to proceed

Evaluate actions and outcome measures . Determine if you want to eliminate , control , or accept each failure mode cause identify a of action for each failure mode to be controlled or eliminated identify outcome measures to test the redesigned process identify an individual responsible for completing the action indicate whether top...

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