National monitoring of clinical effectiveness using the SF-36 questionnaire: using the results for revalidation and clinical governance
Abstract:UK health service providers now have a statutory duty to seek quality improvement through clinical governance. In addition, revalidation will require every doctor who wishes to practise to provide documentary evidence demonstrating that s/he is fit to do so. Medical managers will be involved in implementing the peer review process associated with these quality improvement initiatives and in encouraging the collection of data by individual doctors. What evidence will be needed for this peer review process? Where will it come from?
A national programme of outcome measurement in 70 independent hospitals was set up four years ago. The Short Form-36 (SF-36) questionnaire is used to record health status pre-operatively as well as three months post-operatively. Individual feedback is provided to consultants (and hospitals) about their clinical outcomes.
This paper illustrates how the presentation of the SF-36 outcomes data using Shewhart charts provides a practical and easy-to-interpret tool for clinical governance. It is also a useful source of data for a revalidation folder, providing concrete evidence to discuss at peer review. The ability to benchmark individual practice against national averages provided by this programme is a key feature contributing to clinical quality improvement.
Document Type: Miscellaneous
Publication date: August 1, 2002