2019 marks the 30th anniversary of the Government’s Working for Patients White Paper that introduced medical audit (the fore-runner to clinical audit).

In the 1989 Working for Patients document, medical audit was defined as:

“The systematic, critical analysis of the quality of medical care, including the procedures used for diagnosis and treatment, the use of resources, and the resulting outcome of life for the patient”.

By the mid-1990s, the term “medical audit” had largely been replaced by “clinical audit” and over the last three decades the definition for “clinical audit” has evolved.

The purpose of this very short online questionnaire, is to start to explore: 1) what definition individuals/teams currently use for “clinical audit”, 2) is there a common agreed single/definition when we refer to “clinical audit” and 3) do we (as a community) need to collaborate to develop a new definition for “clinical audit” in 2019? Of course, most of us would agree that “clinical audit” involves measuring care against best practice standards so it seems only right that the audit community have an agreed common language for “clinical audit”. Of course, this work may identify that consensus already exists.

With this in mind, we invite you to tell us how you/or your healthcare team currently define “clinical audit”. Of course, there are many definitions of “clinical audit” so we have suggested the two that we most regularly see from: 1) New Principles of Best Practice in Clinical Audit and 2) NHS England. However, we have also given you the opportunity to provide further details if you have adopted a different definition.

Please complete the three questions below. We will share all the feedback with the clinical audit community and hope this will be seen as a useful initiative. We are happy to work collaboratively with other stakeholders on this project.

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* 1. Please state the sector you work in:

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* 2. Which definition for “clinical audit” do you/ or your healthcare team/ organisation currently use?

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* 3. Considering the definition for “clinical audit” you have selected [A/B or C] do you feel that this is fit-for-purpose in 2019?

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