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11 - Evaluating clinical performance

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  15 December 2009

Hannah Barrett
Affiliation:
University Department of Anaesthesia & Intensive Care Medicine N5 Queen Elizabeth Hospital Edgbaston Birmingham B15 2TH UK
Alison D. Bullock
Affiliation:
School of Education University of Birmingham Edgbaston Birmingham B15 2TT UK
Julian F. Bion
Affiliation:
University Department of Anaesthesia & Intensive Care Medicine N5 Queen Elizabeth Hospital Edgbaston Birmingham B15 2TH UK
Jeremy Cashman
Affiliation:
St George's Hospital, London
Michael Grounds
Affiliation:
St George's Hospital, London
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Summary

Making judgements about ourselves and others is a universal human phenomenon repeated daily in social intercourse, examination halls, or courts of law. It is the desire to do this in an objective, repeatable, reliable and constructive manner that underpins the principle of professional self-regulation. However, this principle has been challenged by evidence of error in healthcare worldwide, and in the UK by several high-profile individual failures which have exposed flaws in regulatory systems. The subsequent public enquiries and their reports have stimulated modifications to training and assessment including regular appraisal and continuing professional development to ensure competence, introduction of a national system for reviewing doctors in difficulty, and several reviews of the concept of professionalism. In short, we will only retain the high level of public trust currently accorded to the medical profession if we combine effective assessment of competence with continued monitoring of performance. Assessment is thus an essential part of ensuring safe and effective patient care.

So much is obvious. But are we not doing this already? The medical profession has from earliest times made a commitment to place the interests of the patient before those of the practitioner and to maintain the highest standards of practice through examination and peer review. The problem is that this commitment may not be shared by all members of the profession. The absence of explicit standards and transparency makes assessment of performance difficult and therefore limits accountability.

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Chapter
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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2007

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  • Evaluating clinical performance
    • By Hannah Barrett, University Department of Anaesthesia & Intensive Care Medicine N5 Queen Elizabeth Hospital Edgbaston Birmingham B15 2TH UK, Alison D. Bullock, School of Education University of Birmingham Edgbaston Birmingham B15 2TT UK, Julian F. Bion, University Department of Anaesthesia & Intensive Care Medicine N5 Queen Elizabeth Hospital Edgbaston Birmingham B15 2TH UK
  • Edited by Jeremy Cashman, Michael Grounds
  • Book: Recent Advances in Anaesthesia and Intensive Care
  • Online publication: 15 December 2009
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511544521.012
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  • Evaluating clinical performance
    • By Hannah Barrett, University Department of Anaesthesia & Intensive Care Medicine N5 Queen Elizabeth Hospital Edgbaston Birmingham B15 2TH UK, Alison D. Bullock, School of Education University of Birmingham Edgbaston Birmingham B15 2TT UK, Julian F. Bion, University Department of Anaesthesia & Intensive Care Medicine N5 Queen Elizabeth Hospital Edgbaston Birmingham B15 2TH UK
  • Edited by Jeremy Cashman, Michael Grounds
  • Book: Recent Advances in Anaesthesia and Intensive Care
  • Online publication: 15 December 2009
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511544521.012
Available formats
×

Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

  • Evaluating clinical performance
    • By Hannah Barrett, University Department of Anaesthesia & Intensive Care Medicine N5 Queen Elizabeth Hospital Edgbaston Birmingham B15 2TH UK, Alison D. Bullock, School of Education University of Birmingham Edgbaston Birmingham B15 2TT UK, Julian F. Bion, University Department of Anaesthesia & Intensive Care Medicine N5 Queen Elizabeth Hospital Edgbaston Birmingham B15 2TH UK
  • Edited by Jeremy Cashman, Michael Grounds
  • Book: Recent Advances in Anaesthesia and Intensive Care
  • Online publication: 15 December 2009
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511544521.012
Available formats
×