ABC of Medical Computing: USING COMPUTERS IN CLINICAL AUDITBMJ 1995; 311 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.311.7007.739 (Published 16 September 1995) Cite this as: BMJ 1995;311:739
- Sue Kinn,
- Nichola Lee,
- Andrew Millman
All clinicians should be measuring their performance against a locally defined standard. In addition, as awareness of the usefulness of audit increases other issues about guidelines are being raised. There is a growing move towards evidence based medicine and a feeling that best practice can be agreed nationally (or internationally) and local standards developed from guidelines. It is therefore becoming increasingly important to collect clinical information in a way that allows it to be pooled for both local and national analysis. Computers are ideally suited to this role.
The systematic critical analysis of the quality of care, including the procedures used for diagnosis and treatment, the use of resources, and the resulting outcome and quality of life for the patient.
Computers and audit
For many people audit has become synonymous with computers. This idea was reinforced when a large proportion of the money ringfenced for audit was spent on computer systems, with varying degrees of success.
Audit is about asking questions concerning clinical practice and necessitates analysis of clinical data. For a few cases, or small data sets, this can be achieved with paper based systems, and many successful audits have not used computers at all. However, if you have a large data …