Best Practice updates for March

Featured updated topic: Assessment of Hypercalcaemia
Hypercalcaemia is caused by either primary hyperparathyroidism or malignancy, in the vast majority of instances. Other aetiologies are numerous but uncommon, including, for example, granulomatous conditions or dietary causes. In Assessment of hypercalcaemia, a diagnostic approach to hypercalcaemia is described, along with overviews of the clinical findings for each differential diagnosis, and links to related full topics describing treatments.  Read the full article here

Updated Best Practice topics

Cardiovascular disorders
Overview of acute coronary syndrome
Tricuspid stenosis

Critical care medicine
Hypercalcaemia (assessment of)


Erythema nodosum
MiliariaInfectious diseases
Chlamydia pneumoniae infection

Renal tubular acidosis
Acute interstitial nephritis

What’s on the virtual shelf? eBooks

Here’s a tasty sample of useful ebooks.
To access and search the full collection go to:

Assessment in Medical Education and Training: A Practical Guide 

Assessment in Medical Education and Training: A Practical Guide 

ABC of Learning and Teaching in Medicine

A Handbook For Medical Teachers 

Teaching Made Easy: A Manual for Health Professionals

Strategies for Healthcare Education: How to Teach in the 21st Century

Teaching and Learning Communication Skills in Medicine

Teaching and Learning in Primary Care

A Handbook of Reflective and Experiential Learning: Theory and Practice

Learning Medicine: How to Become and Remain a Good Doctor

Problem-based Learning for Health Improvement: Practical Public Health for Every Professional

Getting started:

Enter your Athens user ID and password when prompted.
Search for books by putting words in Title as first choice.
Keywords can also be used.
Once you find a title that looks interesting you will see in the detail further leads for similar books in that category e.g. some of these are in the category of: Medical education. Medical schools. Research

Pen a poem and win £1,000

The National Poetry Anthology are inviting free entries to a competition aimed at all UK residents, regardless of age.

There will be 250 area winners whose poems are published and will receive also receive a FREE copy of the book. 

Send up to 3 poems (on any subject) up to 25 lines (including blank lines) and 160 words each to: United Press Ltd, Admail 3735, London, EC1B 1JB

The overall winner receives a cheque for £1,000 and a trophy.  The closing date for entries is June 30 2012.

Britton E; Saravanan R; Koss K; Nelson E, Journal of Crohn’s and Colitis, February 2012

Journal: Conference abstract

An audit of IBD care: Are we up to standards? A patients perspective

Citation: , vol./is. 6/(S144-S145), 1873-9946 (February 2012)

Author(s): Britton E.; Saravanan R.; Koss K.; Nelson E.

Institution: (Britton, Saravanan, Koss, Nelson) Macclesfield District General Hospital, United Kingdom

Abstract: Background: IBD is estimated to affect approximately 400 patients per 100,000 population. A UK wide audit in 2006 demonstrated a wide variation in the quality of care provided. As a direct result a Working Group, was formed to recommend national standards for IBD care. The audit cycles on an annual basis to asses each units adherence to the standards of: A. High quality clinical care B. Local delivery of care C. Maintaining a patient-centred service D. Patient education and support E. Information technology and audit F. Evidence-based practice and research [1] While the national audit is able to adequately assess certain aspects of the standards. We sought to demonstrate how the use of a patient survey can complement the national audit to assess our patients understanding of their disease, access to education/support and overall satisfaction.

Continue reading

Infection: prevention and control of healthcare-associated infections in primary and community care

National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE)

This guideline provides a blueprint for the infection prevention and control precautions that should be applied by everyone involved in the care of people who are having treatment or care either in their own home or elsewhere in the community (for example, in a care home, a GP surgery, health centre, school or prison and by the ambulance service) where NHS healthcare is provided or commissioned.

Improving safety in maternity services: a toolkit for teams

This toolkit is organised around five key areas for improvement in maternity care: teamworking; communication; training; information and guidance; and staffing and leadership. Each section begins with a brief explanation on how focusing on improvements in each area can contribute to improved safety. It then highlights some of the experiences of the maternity teams who focused on this issue and their key learning points. There are also short summaries of tools that can be used to improve safety.

Clinical Effectiveness training

Clinical Effectiveness training : More information

The Clinical Effectiveness Team is offering four, 1 hour, training sessions to all trust staff on Clinical Audit, NICE and Research Governance to support and develop staff in all areas of audit on the following dates:

  • Tuesday 17 April: How to succeed in clinical audit
  • Tuesday 24 April: Are you on the right pathway for NICE?
  • Tuesday 1 May: Research governance
  • Tuesday 8 May: How to succeed in clinical audit 

How to book a place
Places are limited, reserve your place on the session most relevant by emailing:

Aqua news update

AQUA news and events

The trust is a member of the Advancing Quality Alliance (AQuA,) a membership health improvement organisation in theNorth West. Its mission is to mission is to stimulate innovation, spread best practice and support local improvement in health and in the quality and productivity of health services.

To help it achieve its mission AQuA provides a range of free webinars, workshop and training materials to stimulate innovation and improvements in clinical practices.

N.B Access to resources is free but staff members must sign up to the free AQuA membership portal. Each of the links below will prompt you to sign up before progressing to the resources or register for the free training sessions.

Latest roundup

Demand Management WebEx: Urgent and Emergency Care – Friday, 27 April 2012.
Urgent and Emergency Care – the national policy context and A&E quality standards, the first year.Guest Speaker: Dr Matthew Cooke, Department of Health National Clinical Director for Urgent and Emergency Care.

Improving quality outcomes
AQuA is pleased to announce an update to its COPD Improving Outcomes Packs (IOPs). Improving the quality of services for patients who have been diagnosed with, or are at risk of developing COPD should be high on every commissioner’s agenda. Follow the link above to access contemporary resource.

AQuA Improvement Methodologies (AIM)

Cohort 8 (April – June 2012)

Cohort 9 (May – July 2012)
The AQuA Improvement Methodology programme is geared at front line staff/operational leaders in member organisations wanting to gain an introduction to the fundamentals and concepts of quality improvement. Suitable for staff with a basic knowledge of quality improvement tools or for experienced staff wanting to refresh their knowledge and skills.

Long Term Conditions Update
A Monthly update, which covers the AQuA LTC programme.

Mental Health Update
Issue 2 – A Monthly update, which covers the AQuA MH programme.

Long Term Conditions Diagnostic tool
The AQuA LTC diagnostic tool, based onThe King’s Fund’s Ten Priorities for Commisisoners, aims to provide a cross sectional view of outcomes across the ten priorities benchmarked against regional and national data.

Advancing Quality Heart Failure/CABG collaboratives
Advancing Quality is hosting two collaboratives on Monday 23rd April 2012 – one focusing on heart failure and one focusing on Coronary Artery Bypass Graph (CABG).Both events will include a number of presentations and networking opportunities where we hope to share best practice across theNorth West in heart failure and CABG care.

Advancing Quality Stroke collaborative
We are inviting you and your AQ stroke team to this Advancing Quality stroke collaborative on Tuesday 29th May 2012.
The meeting will include a number of presentations and networking opportunities where we hope to share best practice across theNorth West in stroke care.