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Surgical Outcomes

This page outlines College and external resources available to surgeons and surgical services to benchmark care and support quality improvement.

Quality indicators

A variety of indicators and datasets are routinely collected and are available to download. The table below lists some of these.

 Publisher  Title  Details  Data level  Area
 Care Quality Commission  Intelligent monitoring Searchable database of online reports per provider Hospital level  England only
 NHS England  Outcome and monitoring measurements Reports incl A&E waiting times, cancelled elective procedures, consultant led referral to treatment times, never events, cancer waiting times  Hospital level  England only
 NHS England/ RightCare  Commissioning for value packs CCG level intelligence on activity and spend against outcomes  Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGS)   England
 National Audit Office   Mapping between different commissioners of healthcare Estimates of overall health funding at an area-level, taking into account the different geographical variants between commissioners  Area level  England
 Nuffield Trust  Infographics and NHS in numbers  Analysis based on routine activity data   Across devolved nations, longitudinal   All UK
 Department of Health   NHS References costs 2014/15  Tariff costs for procedures and treatments  All NHS   England
Public Health England  Spend and outcome tool (SPOT) An online tool that compares acute hospital activity, clinical coding and payment by results data. Free to all in NHS  Acute hospitals   England
 North East Quality Observatory System Regional Repository of Quality Metrics Microsoft Access database which can be used to identify useful metrics   Health and social care   All UK
NHS Digital
Acute inpatient activity data   Detailed provider level analysis of acute inpatient care   Hospitals, commissioning   England
 Health Foundation & Nuffield Trust  Quality Watch A joint research programme monitoring how the quality of health and social care is changing over time. Over 270 indicators reviewed  Hospital level   England
 Dr Foster  My hospital Guide Online access to HES based data at provider  and commissioner level, mortality, weekend care  Hospitals, commissioning   England
 The Audit Commission National Benchmarker and assurance portal Compares acute hospital activity data, clinical coding and Payment by Results (PbR) related measures with other organisations  Hospital, Area team, CCG, GP level   England
  NHS Scotland  Quality Indicators Quality dashboards, activity funnel plots and PET tools that can be interrogated   Hospital level  Scotland

Patient Reported Outcome Measures (PROMS)

What is a PROM?

A patient-reported outcome measure (PROM) is a series of questions that patients complete about their own health.

PROMs can either be generic or procedure-specific. Their viability for widespread use is assessed through the evidence of their reliability, validity, responsiveness, precision, acceptability to patients and feasibility.

Completion of PROMs pre- and post-operatively allows for a measurement of change in how patients feel, which is then attributable to the surgical intervention.

Further information on resources and databases of PROM tools are available here

Current practice

Currently PROMS are routinely used in surgical practice within four surgical areas; knee replacement, hip replacement, groin hernia and varicose vein surgery. Further details on this national programme are available on the NHS Digital website.

The Royal College of Surgeons are publishing guidance on recommended PROMS for cosmetic practice soon. More information on the work of the college on setting standards for cosmetic surgery is available here

Finding a PROM tool

Oxford University have a bibliography of research related to Patient-Reported Outcome Measures (PROMs) and Patient Reported Experience Measures (PREMs). Included in this website are several meta-analyses of PROMS tools that are available for use within surgical practice. 

National PREMS

The Friends and Family Test (FFT) 

It is now routine practice at the end of treatment or discharge from a hospital, that patients are asked to complete FFT.  This programme was launched in 2013 and has now been rolled out across many of the services within the NHS, including primary care.

Children's Surgery 

RCPCH and The Picker Institute have developed PREMS for urgent and emergency care for children to be used within GPs surgeries, ambulances and Emergency departments.


Further links and resources


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