A correction is any action that is taken to eliminate a nonconformity. Correction is like first-aid, its the instant action that is taken to correct the nonconformity or to reduce the impact nonconformity that has occurred.
Corrective actions are steps that are taken to remove the causes of an existing nonconformity or undesirable situation. Corrective action will target the root cause so that the non-conformity or undesirable situation do not re-occur. Corrective Action can be considered as a ‘Problem Solving’.
Preventive actions are steps that are taken to remove the causes of potential nonconformities or potential situations that are undesirable. Preventive action is like Failure Mode Effect Analysis (FMEA) or risk management. Where the non-conformity or undesirable situation have not actually occurred. We need to anticipate the risks or un-desirable situation that may occur and than think of actions that shall eliminate the cause of non-conformity.
Preventive Action have to be identified protectively, against the potential non-conformities, risks, defects or non-compliances.