Embedding clinical audit into everyday practice: Essential methodology for all clinicians

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Abstract

Clinical audits should underpin everything we do as clinicians – to constantly evaluate and improve our day-to-day clinical practice. Errors in practice, suboptimal practice or inefficiencies can occur in any part of our health-care system, despite the training and best intentions of health-care professionals. Audits examine how clinical care is being provided and whether benchmarks are being met, and identify opportunities for improvement. Detection of problems is greatly improved when audits of practice are undertaken, ideally regularly, and as part of a continuous process of quality improvement. Audits also make ideal entry-level research projects for students and trainees through to senior clinicians. Despite a willingness to undertake audits, and improvements in both undergraduate and postgraduate training, not all clinicians have had formal teaching in audit methodology, and a refresher can also be helpful. This short overview covers basic clinical audit methods, discusses key facilitators for embedding audit into every day practice, and references additional resources to guide clinicians wanting to take up the challenge of regularly and efficiently undertaking audits.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1533-1536
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Paediatrics and Child Health
Volume56
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2020

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