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What is Quality Improvement?

quality improvement in surgery

What is quality?

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Quality involves ensuring that the healthcare you provide is safe, timely, effective, efficient, person-centred and equitable1.

What is quality improvement and what does it improve?

Quality improvement empowers members of the surgical care team to deliver positive changes for patients. It supports people to work in a structured way to identify a problem, explore the options for addressing it to implement changes in a planned way, and use these changes to improve care.

Quality improvement is a practical way for members of the surgical care team working on the front line to improve care for patients. It is the process of using a defined and structured approach over a set period of time to improve patient outcomes and experience. Find out more about the different quality improvement approaches.

Take a look at how these people have used quality improvement to transform care and be inspired to start your own quality improvement work.

How does quality improvement link with clinical audit?

Clinical audit is a way to find out if healthcare is being provided in line with standards and enables care providers and patients know where a service is doing well, and where there could be improvements.

Clinical audits can look at care nationwide (national clinical audits) and local clinical audits can also be performed locally in trusts, hospitals or GP practices anywhere healthcare is provided.2

The important thing is that clinical audits and quality improvement work together to improve patient outcomes and experience. Clinical audits provide information on how a service is doing and where improvements are needed. Quality improvement techniques, can help you to solve any “problems” and introduce ways of doing things better.


1. Health Foundation Quality Improvement Made Simple


Questions about quality improvement? Get in touch


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