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Response on Control Charts

March 31, 2011

Dear Eileen,

I think that the work you are doing to reduce healthcare-acquired infections in clinical settings is to be admired and is very worthwhile. I wish you many successes in your efforts. This letter is written in response to your March 15, 2011 blog entitled “Are We Captives of Control Chart.”

That blog was not written by someone who understands control charts, how they are used, or the information that is contained in this website. It is very misleading.

In addition, your blog provides links to three of the newsletters on our website. I don’t mind people linking our newsletters. In fact, I think it is great. We have a wealth of free knowledge there – not just on control charts but on many other statistical techniques. If you hadn’t brought in the website, I would probably not have responded to your blog. I wrote this month’s newsletter on the purpose of control charts. I would ask that you read it. Below I respond to some of your misleading information on control charts. I am glad your blog was short. My response is longer than your blog.

I could go with asking some questions of you – like what statistics do you use, who that “someone” was who decided that control charts had to be used in healthcare, or what kind of environment causes people to dread out of control points. But I will stop here.

Best wishes for continued success in your work. If you are interested in exploring how control charts can be used in your work, please let me know. I will be happy to work with you (no charge) plus supply our SPC for Excel software for your use (again no charge). Just contact me.


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