22 DECEMBER 2011: Queensland’s independent health watchdog has released a report
showing hospital performance against the Health Quality and Complaints Commission’s healthcare standards is on the rise.
Healthcare standards aim to set achievable and consistent benchmarks in key clinical and governance areas. They are based on published, evidence-based, best-practice guidelines from authorities such as the World Health Organisation and National Health and Medical Research Council. They apply to all Queensland public and licensed private acute and day hospitals.
The Healthcare standards report details Queensland hospital compliance against these best practice standards, giving day hospital, non-government hospital, government hospital and state wide results.
Chief Executive Officer Cheryl Herbert said the standards were selected based on burden of disease, severity of impact on healthcare consumers, frequency of occurrence, major process/system failings in patient safeguards, and reviews and inquiries into health services in Queensland.
“Implementing the standards and meeting the reporting requirements is one way hospitals can demonstrate compliance with their duty to improve. In the report, we present Queensland hospitals’ compliance against each healthcare standard from credentialing through to ensuring the correct patient is operated on,” Adjunct Professor Herbert said.
Credentialing and scope of clinical practice standard: this standard requires that the healthcare provider has a process to ensure all practitioners are credentialed appropriately.
- 91% of Queensland acute and day hospitals reported having a process that met all of this standard’s requirements.
- Across the state, hospitals reported that 98% of eligible medical practitioners were credentialed.
Ensuring correct patient, site, side and procedure standard: this standard requires the healthcare provider to ensure that the correct patient receives the correct procedure on the correct site and side.
- 78% of Queensland acute and day hospitals reported using a process that included all of this standard’s criteria.
- A surgical safety checklist was completed during surgery in 90% of audited procedures.
- Across the state in 2010-11, one incident of incorrect patient, site, side or procedure resulted in a serious consequence for the patient.
Review of hospital-related deaths standard: this standard requires the healthcare provider to ensure all hospital-related deaths are reviewed.
- 94% of Queensland acute and day hospitals reported having a process for review of deaths that met all of the standard’s criteria.
- 80% of hospital-related deaths in Queensland acute and day hospitals were reviewed by a clinical team.
- 32% of hospital-related deaths were independently reviewed by peers.
The HQCC is an independent body dedicated to improving the quality and safety of health services in Queensland. Established in July 2006, the HQCC resolves complaints, investigates serious healthcare issues and monitors the quality of health services across the state.