NICE to develop 31 new quality standards

NICE is to produce quality standards for 31 new clinical areas including asthma, bipolar disorder, diabetes and four different types of cancer.

The latest additions will join a suite of four already published by the NHS watchdog, while a further nine are in the pipeline. Once approved by parliament, the standards will be used by the new NHS Commissioning Board to develop national outcomes and local indicators that will then be used to hold GP commissioning consortia to account.

The 31 new topics cover: acute chest pain; antenatal care; asthma (including children and young people); bipolar disorder in adults; bipolar disorder in children and adolescents; colorectal cancer; diabetes in children (type 1 and type 2); diagnosis and management of hepatitis B, all ages; drug use disorders (over-16s); epilepsy in adults; epilepsy in children; falls in a care setting; head injury; hip fractures; intrapartum care; intravenous fluid therapy in hospitalised adult patients; lung cancer; management of myocardial infarction; management of ulcerative colitis; meningitis in people under 16; migraine/headache (over 12 years of age); nutrition in hospital, including young people; osteoarthritis; ovarian cancer; postnatal care; pressure ulcers; prostate cancer; pulmonary embolism; reflux disease (gastro-oesophageal reflux disease); safe prescribing; and schizophrenia.

NICE quality standards are the only standards in health and social care that apply nationally in England and aim to help healthcare practitioners and commissioners of care deliver excellence in services. They are a set of specific, concise statements that act as markers of high-quality, clinically and cost-effective patient care, and will play a pivotal role in the NHS Outcomes Framework 2011-12, which was published by the Department of Health in late December.

Read more about the latest quality standards here