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Draft guide on quality standards for health boards
Posted 05 January 2015
The Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care (ACSQHC) has released a draft guide for health service boards on the National Safety and Quality Health Service Standards, which all hospitals and day procedure services must implement.
However, the VHA believes more specific guidance is required for health service boards to understand their governance role in the implementation of these standards.
A clearer distinction is needed between the governance role of boards and the operational role of management. For example, the draft guide suggests boards are responsible for the adoption of clinical guidelines, which the VHA sees as a management responsibility.
The draft guide also states that boards allocate resources to meet clinical needs, and ensure screening tools and guidelines are in place to effectively manage at-risk groups. The VHA considers these management responsibilities, for which the board has oversight.
The VHA supports the aims of the draft guide but believes it is too operationally focused, which will lead boards to take an operational perspective rather than governing the implementation of national standards.
The VHA’s submission on the ACSQHC draft guide provides examples of effective clinical governance by boards.
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