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Auditing Implementation of National Guidance — a 2–day national or local course

Benefits of the course

The course has been designed in response to requests from clinical audit staff for advice on carrying out clinical audits to demonstrate that national guidance is being implemented by clinical services. Examples of national guidance include clinical guidelines, technology appraisals, interventional procedures, public health and patient safety guidance published by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE); clinical guidelines published by the Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network (SIGN); Best Practice Statements published by NHS Quality Improvement Scotland; NHS Litigation Authority Standards; National Service Frameworks and other national guidance.

Intended participants

The course is intended for staff who are experienced in supporting clinical audit and who may be expected to ensure that clinical audits are carried out to demonstrate the implementation of national guidance. The course assumes basic knowledge of the clinical audit process and experience supporting clinical teams in carrying out clinical audits. The course also is suited for clinicians who lead clinical audit for their services.

Learning objectives

The course is designed to help individuals develop competence and confidence in how to:

  • read and interpret national guidance documents, especially to identify the content in the document that can be subject to clinical audit
  • group related national guidance documents together and carry out audits on related guidance at the same time
  • interpret the clinical audit advice that might be provided in a national guidance document
  • audit implementation when the guidance document does not give explicit statements that can easily be subject to measurement
  • construct samples for clinical audits that are scientifically robust yet practical to carry out
  • involve doctors in training in carrying out audits on the implementation of national guidance
  • analyse types of variation in clinical practice and guide clinicians to act on variation the right way
  • influence clinical teams to analyse effectively findings of audits on the implementation of national guidance.
Course programme

The course runs from 9.00 am to 5.00 pm each day. The course tutor gives brief presentations and participants work extensively in small groups or on their own making decisions about clinical audit programmes on national guidance and designs of individual audits.


Each participant receives a 240–page Auditing Implementation of National Guidance manual and other reference and learning materials. Certificates of participation in the course are provided.

What participants say about the course

Participant comments about the course include:

'I am going away enthused to tackle what I thought was an overwhelming problem'

'Course was extremely valuable and concise and good starting point to develop implementation/audit in my role'

'The manual, the tutor's explanation of terms and group work — all was valuable!'

'All staff need to attend the course — very thorough course'

'Tool to measure organizational preparedness was most valuable'

'I don't feel there was any aspect of the course that wasn't of value. All aspects of the course have given me food for thought to 'chew' back at my organization'

'Very much enjoyed the course and I have plenty of ideas to bring back to the task of complying with guidelines in my workplace'

'Practising writing clinical audit measures for national guidelines was of most value'


View a calendar of dates for national courses.

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