Article Title

Clinician ranking of the importance of quality and safety indicators for consideration by Health Service Boards


Objective: Benchmarking is an important tool to improve safety and quality in healthcare services. The objective was to develop a list of clinical indicators prioritized by clinicians engaged in direct patient care.

Methods: An audit of voting outcomes from clinicians who were members of a Clinical Senate representing the State of Western Australia, Australia was undertaken. Clinicians received written information and a list of clinical indicators compiled from five reputable sources. A facilitated debate was held utilizing deliberative decision making, before clinicians voted on their top 20 indicators.

Results: There was an 81% response rate. The top ten clinical indicators were: Severity Access Code 1 event reporting, hospital acquired complications, potentially preventable hospitalisations, medication safety, clinical handover, discharge summary completion rates, staff satisfaction and engagement, links with primary care, patient experience and staff employment metrics. In the specialty disciplines of obstetrics and neonatal medicine and mental health, a strong preference was displayed for a small group of selected indicators (3 to 5) rather than full sets or single indicators.

Discussion: Clinicians can engage effectively in decision making in regard to selection of safety and quality indicators. Involving clinicians in indicator selection may facilitate improvements in care.


healthcare services, benchmarking, safety and quality indicators, clinicians, indicator selection

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