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Sampling Considerations for Health Care Improvement

Perla, Rocco J. EdD; Provost, Lloyd P. MS; Murray, Sandra K. MA

doi: 10.1097/QMH.0000000000000042
Original Articles

Sampling in improvement work can pose challenges. How is it different from the sampling strategies many use with research, clinical trials, or regulatory programs? What should improvement teams consider when determining a useful approach to sampling and a useful sample size? The aim of this article is to introduce some of the concepts related to sampling for improvement. We give specific guidance related to determining a useful sample size to a wider health care audience so that it can be applied to improvement projects in hospitals and health systems.

University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester (Dr Perla); Associates in Process Improvement, Austin, Texas (Mr Provost); and Corporate Transformation Concepts, Eugene, Oregon (Ms Murray).

Correspondence: Lloyd P. Provost, Associates in Process Improvement, 115 E 5th St, No. 300, Austin, TX 78701 (

Reprinted from QMHC Vol. 22, No. 1, pp. 36–47.

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

© 2014Wolters Kluwer Health | Lippincott Williams & Wilkins