Audit

Dr Sian Williams

Dr Sian Williams, who has run the programme of national audit on behalf of NHS occupational health, explains in this video how you can use audit to drive up the standards of your service.

Audit is an essential tool by which to measure and, thereby, raise standards and reduce variability in the delivery of health care services. NHS Plus funded the first ever national audits of occupational health practices in England on the Management of Back Pain and Depression Screening and Management of Staff on Long Term Sickness Absence.

A second round of the Management of Back Pain audit is currently underway. The second round of the Depression Screening and Management of Staff on Long Term Sickness Absence was published in 2011.

Over 70% of NHS Trusts participated in the first round of audits. NHS Plus subsequently hosted a national conference to examine attitudes and opinions and embed change. Using an anonymous voting mechanism, 79% of attendees reported they had changed their practice as a result of the information provided by the audits. A report from the conference is available here.

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