Audiology Scotland rolls out quality improvement tool

An IT-based quality audit and improvement tool has been rolled out across NHS Scotland Audiology Services as part of a nationwide improvement process.

The clinical information management and EPR (electronic patient record) solution, Tiara9, is being used to support an annual process of self-assessment and peer-review, with clinicians from all 14 health boards logging on to the web-based solution to score service performance against a set of benchmark quality standards. The software then uses this data to generate reports which are used to inform local actions. 

The implementation of Tiara9 has resulted in a more efficient way of managing performance. The easy-to-use, automated-system has reduced the administrative burden on clinicians as well as freeing up management time which is redirected back into analysing the information produced and supporting the implementation of action plans. 

The availability of nationwide data is also a huge advantage as it provides a clear picture of what is going on across the country at the push of a button. This helps to identify trends and areas where intervention is needed, as well as highlighting examples of good practice. 

Angela Bonomy, National Audiology Manager for NHS Scotland, comments: “The process has given us powerful data to support the improvement process. For each of the criteria being measured, someone will be performing well so by pooling this knowledge, we can create a picture of what the perfect service looks like.” 

Tiara9 is produced by Leicester-based software house Ethitec, and has been designed with input from clinicians. The system is on track to achieve full Choose and Book compliance, access to which is a requirement for NHS England’s flagship policy of commissioning services from any qualified providers (AQP).


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