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NICE unveils nine more ‘quality standards’ to judge GP commissioning



By Lilian Anekwe

NICE has announced it is to develop quality standards covering a further nine clinical areas for use in judging the future performance of GP commissioners.

Quality standards will be used by the National Commissioning Board to judge the performance of GP consortiums once they are commissioning services for their local area in 2013.

Achievement of the quality standards will also feed into the calculation of payments of quality premiums, for GP consortiums who perform well against the standards and are able to demonstrate high quality outcomes.

NICE has already published three quality standards – for outcomes in stroke, dementia and venous thromboembolism – and the institute today announced a further nine will be in development over the next year.

The institute says the the new quality standards will set out ‘markers of excellent care’ for the management of: breast cancer, type 1 and 2 diabetes, CKD, end-of-life care, glaucoma, depression, chronic heart failure, the treatment of alcohol dependence and COPD. Work has already begun on the development of the depression quality standards, which are out for consultation until 13 September. ]

An additional thirteenth quality standard on specialist neonatal care is due later in the year, although it was not included in today’s formal announcement of those in development..

Dr Fergus Macbeth, director of the NICE centre for clinical practice, said: ‘NICE quality standards provide clear statements and associated measures, which will be used to assess existing practice and improve future services. They will focus on outcomes of care, as well as patient experience and cost effectiveness.’

Glaucoma is one of nine new clinical areas to be covered by NICE’s quality standards Glaucoma is one of nine new clinical areas to be covered by NICE’s quality standards