Healthcare Quality Improvement

This page provides information and resources to support the use of the national clinical audit and patient outcome programme (NCAPOP) to stimulate healthcare quality improvement.

A quality improvement strategy guide for NCAPOP providers

Examples of NCAPOP provider plans:

Examples of NCAPOP quality improvement projects

Quality improvement resources to support healthcare providers

We have produced a guide to quality improvement. The guide brings together twelve quality improvement methods, providing an overview of each and practical advice on how and when to implement them, with illustrative case examples.

Additional quality improvement guides and tools are available via the following links.

eLearning – Introduction to quality improvement for healthcare professionals

We have created a new eLearning course: ‘Introduction to quality improvement for healthcare professionals’, to provide information about the  principles and tools involved in quality improvement.

Maximising the quality improvement potential of the NCAPOP

We undertook a project, funded by the Health Foundation, to enhance the quality improvement potential of the NCAPOP) by:

  • Refining and improving HQIP’s approach to commissioning.
  • Raising the visibility of the NCAPOP improvement activity and resources.
  • Increasing the support to NCAPOP delivery teams on designing for QI impact.

Read the full project report here.

Guide to writing a NCAPOP Healthcare Improvement plan

A writing guide can be found, here.

A-Z of clinical audit and QI networks

HQIP provides support for clinical audit and quality improvement networks, many of which were established by our quality improvement and development team. We encourage audit and QI professionals to engage in the benefits of sharing best practice, networking and co-education and training to ensure that skills are recognised and maintained in healthcare provider organisations.

Importantly, clinical audit and quality improvement professionals are a vital source of knowledge and support for clinicians and patient and public involvement leads in driving forward quality improvement activity.

Networks are a great way to get peer support and find out what has worked well in other regions and hospitals. Are you a member of a network? Find out about to get involved in your local network below.

If you have any queries about our support for networks please contact: [email protected]




National Quality Improvement and Clinical Audit Network (NQICAN)

The NQICAN is the ‘network of networks’ and has representation from all regional networks, some national/specialist networks and national groups such as medical and surgical royal colleges and HQIP. The current chair is Carl Walker of University Hospitals Leicester
Email: [email protected]

National Ambulance Clinical Audit Steering Group

The group’s purpose is to support the strategic development and coordination of clinical audit and quality improvement in ambulance services. Membership is open to ambulance service clinical audit leads and invited co-opted members.
Contact: Niro Siriwardena

North East

North East Clinical Audit Network

The North East Clinical Audit Network is not active at present. If you would be interested in joining or leading a group in the North East please contact the chair.

Contact the chair: Jordan Thompson

Yorkshire and Humber

Yorkshire Effectiveness and Audit Regional Network (YEARN)

The YEARN includes managers of clinical effectiveness, clinical audit and governance in all sectors across Yorkshire and the Humber. They meet every two months at various locations across the region and cover a network of around 40 people from primary care, secondary care, hospice, mental health, ambulance and blood services.

Contact the chair: Vicky Patel

North West

North West Mental Health Clinical Audit Group

The group has been established to support staff, and promote the sharing of good practices between audit/effectiveness departments within Mental Health Trusts in the North West. It aims to enable the sharing of common audit tools, facilitate benchmarking processes, enable networking and provide peer support for staff as well as facilitate problem solving.

Contact the chair: Catherine Dunn

Cumbria and Lancashire Clinical Audit Network (CaLCan)

The CaLCan was Established in May 2010, the group is open to anyone involved in clinical audit or quality improvement.
Membership includes acute trusts, mental health trusts, providers and commissioners and the purpose of the network is to promote the sharing of knowledge, information and effective practice in relation to clinical audit.

Contact the chair: Heather Pratt

Greater Manchester Clinical Audit Network (GMCAN)

GMCAN was established in February 2007 “To develop links and share good practice through experiences gained in everyday clinical audit and to standardise best practice throughout the region”
It acts as a discussion forum and support mechanism for clinical audit staff, meeting quarterly in January, April, June, October at the Trafford General Hospital Education Centre.

Contact the chair: Janette Hunt

Mersey Clinical Audit Network

The Mersey Quality Improvement Clinical Audit Network (MQICAN) welcomes new members to its quarterly meetings at the NHS Blood & Transplant Centre. Regular membership includes RLBUHT, Alder Hey, Aintree, COCH, Liverpool Women’s, Liverpool Heart & Chest, Wirral, NWAS and NHS Blood and Transplant Service.

Contact the chair: Sarah Byrne

East Midlands

East Midlands Clinical Audit Support Network (EMCASnet)

EMCASnet is a network of people with a clinical audit remit from organisations within the East Midlands that provide or commission care to NHS patients, with attendance from relevant partner organisations.

The role of the network is to provide development of skills, promote networking and sharing of good practice, and communicate and influence national developments impacting on clinical audit.

The network aims to have 2-3 meetings and 1-2 training events each year, these are held in venues around the region and funded by HQIP.

Contact the joint chairs: Louise Waller

West Midlands

Midlands Effectiveness and Audit Network (MEAN)

The MEAN is open to all staff in the NHS (West Midlands Strategic Health Authority area) who work in areas related to clinical audit and effectiveness. The group aims to:

  • share information on relevant national guidance and initiative
  • provide networking forums and opportunities, both physical and virtual
  • arrange network meetings on a routine basis, initially quarterly
  • ensure meetings have a lead person and appropriate administrative support
  • maintain an email mailing & discussion list
  • share information about relevant training and development opportunities
  • encourage membership and attendance for all in the West Midlands region working in areas related to NHS
  • clinical audit and effectiveness
  • maximise the sharing of all members’ knowledge

The group has a core planning group which is open to all members who wish to volunteer with organising MEAN activities. Responsibility for taking notes at meetings, arranging meeting venues and chairing the meetings is undertaken by a core planning group member by rota.

Contact the joint chairs: Tracy Millar and Diane Lynch

NQICAN representative: Val Bailey

East of England

East of England Clinical Audit Network

The East of England Clinical Audit and NICE Network supports and represents clinical audit and quality improvement staff in all healthcare sectors across Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Essex, Hertfordshire, Norfolk and Suffolk.

Set up in March 2010, the group holds quarterly meetings hosted by organisations across the region. If you are involved in clinical audit or quality improvement in the East of England then we would like to hear from you. The network also has strong links with NICE and membership is also open to staff who have responsibility for the management and implementation of NICE guidance.

Contact the chair: Alka Anoop

South West

South West Audit Network (SWANS)

The SWANS broadly covers the NHS South West Region and exists for the benefit of clinical audit and effectiveness staff. SWANS provides the opportunity for sharing information, ideas, problems and successes.

Contact the chair: Sarah Chessell

South Central

South Central Clinical Audit Network (SCCAN)

The South Central Clinical Audit Network represents and supports clinical audit and quality improvement staff across all healthcare sectors working in the South Central region. The network holds quarterly meetings hosted by organisations within the network. The network also holds training and education events. If you are involved in clinical audit and quality improvement in the region they would like to hear from you.

Contact the chair: Emma Lofthouse

South East

South East Clinical Effectiveness Network (SECEN)

The SECEN is a collaborative of professionals working in quality improvement including; clinical audit, effectiveness and governance. The group, which is one of the longer established networks, covers staff working in organisations across all healthcare sectors in the South East Coast region; membership is free and unrestricted. Meetings are held three times a year and also include training and education events.

Contact the chair Mojan Sani: [email protected]


The North London Clinical Audit Network (NLCAN) and South and East London (SELCAN) have recently been joined together.

Both networks represent and support clinical audit and quality improvement staff in all healthcare sectors working in the London boroughs with the exception of the following boroughs in east London – City of London, Hackney, Tower Hamlets, Newham.

The joined networks hold quarterly meetings hosted by local organisations and hold regular pan-London events. If you are involved in clinical audit and quality improvement in London we would like to hear from you.

Contact the chair: [email protected]