The purpose of this article is to give a brief introduction to the global phenomenon of standardization of management systems and to analyze the case of Spanish care homes.
Observation and interviews were conducted with top and middle managers, consultants and employees of UNE 158001 certified Spanish care homes. The paper analyzes the impact of UNE 158001 standards for residential homes for the elderly, the only specific standard for care homes that has been enacted by a European standardization body.
Those homes which have implemented and certified the UNE 158001 standard point out that the application of this standard has not been difficult, thanks to the prior implementation of the ISO 9001:2000 standard, and also due to the fact that most of the requirements laid down by the UNE 158001 standard were already deemed to be customary according in their systems, with only some “minor” requirements needing change. The reasons behind the implementation the UNE 158001 standard were varied. Thus, some representatives of residential care homes pointed out that the standard was implemented in order to improve the efficiency of the home and/or improve the quality of the service provided. On the other hand, however, there were representatives who claimed that implementing UNE 158001 serves essentially a business purpose – in other words, of an image conveyed on the market.
The paper provides a useful up‐to‐date conceptual overview for the different agencies interested in the sector, including managers, public administrators and consultants. In addition, the paper provides information for future developments in the sector.
Heras, I., Cilleruelo, E. and Iradi, J. (2008), "Standardization of management systems in Spanish care homes", Leadership in Health Services, Vol. 21 No. 2, pp. 111-119. https://doi.org/10.1108/17511870810870556
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