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Consultation on clinical quality registries has long way to go

The AMA has submitted its proposal to the Health Department’s national strategy for Australian Clinical Quality Registries.

30 Jul 2019

The AMA has submitted its proposal to the Health Department’s national strategy for Australian Clinical Quality Registries.

The AMA agrees there is merit in the idea of establishing a system to broaden the range of clinical quality registries (CQR) and participation in them. CQRs are widely recognised as a powerful tool to improve the quality and effectiveness of patient care within a clinical domain.

“Benefits are greatest when clinicians lead the development and implementation of CQR, and trust the validity of the clinical indicators, the benchmark methodology and the benchmarked data of their patients,” the AMA submission states.

“It is also the case that fewer patient complications will undoubtedly lower the cost of providing health care – especially complex hospital care. The use of a national framework, to create a consistent standard of CQR in Australia, could be a sensible mechanism to achieve this outcome.

“Having said this, the degree to which healthcare provider organisations and individual clinicians are inspired to participate will depend on the details of the accreditation standards and governance arrangements – most of which appear to be a work in progress.

“There is a long way to go before the AMA will have a clear idea of how this proposed strategy will positively or negatively impact clinicians and their healthcare organisations or achieves the intended purpose of improving the effectiveness and efficiency of health care.

“Despite the substantial benefits that could be achieved if all CQR in Australia were of a consistent high standard, with similar architecture, operating systems, data structure and governance to permit comprehensive national reporting, the AMA remains concerned about some aspects of the proposed framework.”

The concerns listed include the impact on clinician registration under the National Registration and Accreditation Scheme; CQR design and governance; outlier management; reporting; and funding.

“It would seem this consultation still has a long way to go and there is a lot of the granular detail that is not yet finalised,” the submission states.

“The AMA does not oppose the idea of lifting the overall standards and coverage of CQR but it needs to be very carefully constructed and implemented to inspire clinicians and healthcare organisations to willingly participate.

“Practising clinicians, represented by clinical Colleges, Societies and Associations, must be involved in the strategy co-design and implementation.”

The full submission can be found at:


Published: 30 Jul 2019