58 Steffi Zifert, Pirna "Having (local) medical care is very important to me because it is very important to receive quick medical care in an emergency. " CORPORATE GOVERNANCE Orienting all activities on the well-being of patients is at the very heart of RHÖN-KLINIKUM AG's corporate philosophy. The primacy of patient orientation is the main reason why our quality management significant- ly exceeds the scope prescribed by law. For example, Rhön-Klinikum Group is not content to merely meet the publication requirements of the German Social Insurance Code (SGB) in force since 2004. External reporting is an important matter of concern for us ­ if presented in comprehensible form it can provide patients with valuable information ­ but the Group's hospitals and medical care centres (MVZs) first and foremost strive to gain knowledge and insights that help optimise the processes of diagnosing and treat- ing patients. That is why quality management at RHÖN-KLINIKUM AG sets the bar higher. For example, our results- based measurements already cover all clinical dis- ciplines, and they also provide for a greater depth of information compared with the statutory require- ments. In our quality circles, specialist doctors from all disciplines further develop the indicator system and refine our system of measuring the quality of the services we provide to patients. In the quality circles the head physicians of the spe- cialist disciplines within our network of hospitals meet once to twice a year, among other things to dis- cuss the results of quality measurement. In this con- nection they discuss differences in quality between hospitals and their manifold possible causes. The objective is not only to show the individual facility how it can make improvements but also to dialogue with the facility in finding new methods and possibili- ties of treatment. Thanks to this lively exchange, the quality circles also serve as a central platform of in- ternal knowledge transfer. The entire quality strategy is defined comprehensive- ly and is based on three core elements: quality man- agement, medical controlling and hygiene manage- ment. Quality management essentially has the task of measuring the results of medical services and determining the satisfaction of patients in order to draw certain conclusions for developing and improv- ing clinical processes. Medical controlling, which to a certain extent draws on the same information base, is the economic counterpart of quality management. It measures and documents the services provided for each and every patient. Documentation thus serves as an QUALITY REPORT FOR 2009 Striving for the highest possible quality and safety in medical services is an integral part of our business model. The principle that good medical practice is something that must not be left to chance but has to be ensured systematically has been the guiding principle for the management of RHÖN-KLINIKUM AG ever since the Company was founded.
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