Clinicians and audit
Clinicians are at the heart of quality improvement and HQIP believes professionally led quality improvement is the centre of change in the NHS. Clinical audit in particular needs a cadre of committed, informed, trained and experienced people to drive audit practice.
HQIP is committed to developing clinician skills and commitment to audit, through:
GUIDANCE FOR CLINICIANS: HQIP
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GUIDANCE FOR CLINICIANS: OTHER ORGANISATIONS
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HQIP works with a number of clinicians around the country, who champion the benefits of clinical audit.
The clinical champions have experience of achieving improvement in clinical quality through completion of the clinical audit cycle, either at an organisational, clinical team or individual level.
Our champions often present their experiences alongside HQIP staff at local, regional and national events and are frequently consulted with on the development of many of our projects.
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Appraisal, revalidation and clinical audit
Clinical audit is a vital source of evidence of the effectiveness of clinical practice and should be submitted as evidence at each appraisal for the purposes of revalidation. The agreed system commences in 2012.
In 2009, through the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges (AoMRC), HQIP supplied guidance on how clinical audit should be used as supporting information for the process. This was based on extensive work with representatives of individual colleges. View the HQIP/AoMRC 'Clinical Audit & Revalidation' report >>
The General Medical Council (GMC) has issued a final set of guidance on sources of information to be used as supporting evidence and clinical audit remains a significant part, in exactly the way as recommended in the AoMRC report. The GMC guidance states that doctors should illustrate how they ‘participate and respond constructively' to clinical audit. This expression derives from the three principles in the AoMRC report: ‘participate, reflect and take action'. Therefore the existing AoMRC report remains a useful guide for both individual doctors and their appraisers.
Individual colleges have issued their own specific guidance for their members about supporting evidence, including clinical audit. In many cases this recommends that a doctor should submit one completed audit cycle within a five year period as evidence for revalidation, and in some cases suggests that evidence from the audit as to clinical outcomes achieved by the doctor should be used.
GMC requirements on using clinical audit as part of revalidation and appraisal, for individual doctors, appraisers, responsible officers and organisations, is contained here: http://www.gmc-uk.org/doctors/revalidation/revalidation_information.asp
The College pages are gathered together on the Academy site: http://www.aomrc.org.uk/revalidation/role-of-medical-royal-colleges-faculties.html
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Supporting Professional Development
The centre of quality improvement is the responsibility each clinician takes in achieving the highest standards. HQIP works to help and support clinicians to achieve these.
HQIP works with and for the professional bodies that represent clinical groups, and their federative bodies such as the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges, to promote good practice in review and improvement of clinical practice.
This involves helping organisations develop the way they encourage good practice and quality improvements amongst their members; and to help refine approaches and find new ways to improve quality within professional groups.
We also work to define the role of audit and other quality improvement in the processes used to assure the quality of clinical practice, such as revalidation.
We also work to stimulate groups and networks below the level of Royal Colleges and specialist societies.
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The Role of Professional Bodies
All the key colleges and societies have been active in promoting audit and other related quality improvement activity for many years. Some colleges lead and sponsor national audits in areas of particular interest; others bid to HQIP for funds for large scale audit projects.
Click here to visit a comprehensive mapping of professional bodies and where available, their engagement with audit (this is updated regularly) >>
HQIP is available to support colleges in this work, ensuring there is commonality in the messages given about audit and helping to advise on both process and possible activity to support audit. We can give technical advice on development of audit programmes and discuss ideas at the development stage. We can also help communicate audit activity to our extensive membership lists of audit specialist at local Trust level.
Through our online professional networking system NCAF (National Clinical Audit Forum), we provide the platform for special interest groups link-up, network and share resources.
Periodically HQIP is able to support individual colleges develop specific resources for their members, especially where there are needs to improve clinicla audit in specific areas of clinical practice. If your society or college has ideas for new initiatives to support clinical audit, please contact us with these.
Contact LQIT >>
We can also help with small amounts of funding for clinical networks looking to run multi-site audits and with some of their costs associated with their audit.
See more on multi-site audit funding >>
One way colleges seek to support members is through schemes of appraisal and kitemaking of audits completed by their members, which in turn can be used as examples of audit topics and methodology in specific areas of clinical practice.
HQIP believes that it is the responsibility of individual colleges to offer examples of audit topics and methodologies that relate to their specialist areas of practice and it is not our role to step into their work. However we can advise on how this can be done, and help promote such libraries or registers. We can also share good practice and interesting modles of how colleges support their members.
One example is the Royal College of Pathologists audit appraisal system. Read more here >>
Such bodies can also help their members develop audits in areas of particular interest to the speciality, through provision of guidance and toolkits for audits. HQIP can advise on how these may be developed.
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