Clinical governance is a system by which healthcare providers can continuously monitor and improve the quality of their services and safeguarding high standards of care.
It brings together different strands of quality improvement including patient/client feedback, effective leadership, evidence-based practice, education and training, audit and managing risk.
A Framework for Clinical Governance?
There are many frameworks for clinical governance, but the most familiar is the 7 Key Pillars of Clinical Governance. These pillars are:
- Clinical Effectiveness and Research – Care should be evidence based and designed to deliver the best outcome for the patient/client.
- Audit – The audit process is to ensure that clinical practice is continuously monitored and that deficiencies in care delivery are remedied.
- Risk Management – Systems should be in place to understand, monitor and minimise risk to safeguard patients and staff.
- Education and Training – Staff need appropriate training and support available to maintain their competency and to develop new skills, so they are continuously up to date.
- Patient and Public Involvement – Involvement and feedback from both the patient/client and the public is used to develop and improve services and the quality of the experience of the care delivered.
- Information and IT – Data needs to be secure, up to date and accurate, and used effectively to measure quality of the services.
- Staff Management – The safe and appropriate recruitment and management of staff.
What Do the CQC Expect to See?
The CQC consider clinical governance arrangements within a provider to make judgements about how effective and well-led they are.
These include, but are not limited to:
- Information and people’s care and treatments and their outcomes are routinely collected and monitored. Information including assessments, diagnosis and referrals are used to improve the quality of care.
- Quality improvement activities, including clinical audits and other monitoring activities, such as reviews of services, benchmarking, peer review and service accreditation.
- Empowering patients/clients, listening and learning from incidents, complaints and complements, and enabling staff to lead change.
How Can Care 4 Quality. Help?
Addressing good clinical governance should be a high priority for all healthcare providers. However, it can be a daunting and time-consuming task for providers to keep on top of.
Looking at clinical governance arrangements is a key aspect of CQC inspections. The best way to prepare for a CQC inspection is to arrange a mock inspection with a member of our team.
The processes involved are relevant to the key questions, or KLOEs, that a CQC inspector will ask as part of the process.
- Is your provider safe?
- Is your provider effective?
- Is your provider caring?
- Is your provider responsive to people’s needs?
- Is your provider well-led?
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