A NOD to Affirm Performance
Surgeons need to know if they are making the cut – and that requires expensive, time-consuming performance appraisals. But it doesn’t need to be that way. The Royal College of Ophthalmologists National Ophthalmology Database (RCOphth NOD) Audit can provide richer outcomes analysis than any single individual or institution could ever achieve – and at less cost.
John Sparrow | | Longer Read
At a Glance
- Increasing adoption of electronic medical records throughout the NHS provides opportunities to improve outcomes via data analysis
- The RCOphth NOD Audit is capitalizing on this information source to assess cataract patient outcomes per center and per surgeon throughout England and Wales
- By virtue of the richness of these data, the Audit can also employ statistical models to identify high-risk patients, enabling them to be allocated to more experienced surgeons
- Future developments include expansion of the Audit into other parts of the UK and into non-cataract ocular conditions.
We all like to know how well we’re doing – and we are increasingly obliged to ensure that we have that knowledge to hand. Indeed, performance assessment – as measured by patient outcomes – is now a key part of ongoing professional development for surgeons. But measuring performance criteria can be onerous; even a local audit in a representative group of patients is very time consuming, especially if it involves accessing and analyzing hard copies of medical records. Furthermore, medical time is expensive; it just doesn’t make economic sense for each surgeon to spend hours analyzing their own performance.
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