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Quality management systems in Portuguese hospital pharmacies
  1. Helena Farinha1,
  2. Rute Varela2
  1. 1Department of Pharmacy - HEM, CHLO, Lisbon, Portugal; APFH board member
  2. 2Department of Pharmacy - IPO Lisboa, Lisbon, Portugal; APFH board member
  1. Correspondence to Dr Helena Farinha, Department of Pharmacy - HEM, CHLO, Rua da Junqueira 126, Lisbon 1349-019, Portugal; mhmartins{at}

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Certification of management systems is the attestation by a Certification Body, based on decision analysis, which confirms that specified requirements and their conformity have been demonstrated. It therefore aims to show publicly in writing that a particular product, process or service conforms to specified requirements.

The provision of health services has two quality components: the operational component, which is the process itself; and one of perception, or how customers perceive the type of service offered and how providers feel about what they are providing.

Management systems therefore direct and control organisations with regard to quality. As a tool, they bring standardisation of processes and control over them, enable implementation of efficiency measures and verify the effectiveness of implemented actions, with specific focus on customer satisfaction and continuous improvement. Such systems provide security to top management in decision-making by enabling the reading of performance indicators (monitoring and improvement).

The certification of compliance with technical standards was initially designed for products requiring high standards of safety and quality (eg, the aircraft industry), but it has been extended to other sectors that also have critical requirements such …

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  • Competing interests None.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.