NICE consults on new specialist neonatal quality standard
NICE has today (17 May) launched a consultation on its quality standard for specialist neonatal care. The four-week consultation period will also include field testing; this involves NICE implementation consultants visiting service providers and exploring how the standard can be effectively and successfully put into practice.
NICE quality standards are markers of high quality care. They are produced collaboratively with the NHS and social care professionals, along with their partners and service users. They are the only standards in health and social care that apply nationally in England, and are derived from the best available evidence, usually NICE guidance or other sources that have been accredited by NHS Evidence.
NICE quality standards are aimed at:
- patients (including parents in this case) and the public
- public health practitioners
- commissioners, and
- service providers.
The draft quality standard on specialist neonatal care covers a number of aspects, including:
- mothers and babies receiving specialist neonatal care should undergo all their treatment at the same hospital.
- parents of babies receiving care are encouraged and supported to be involved in decision making, and regular communication with clinical staff occurs throughout.
- mothers of babies receiving specialist neonatal care are supported to start and maintain breastfeeding.
- parents of babies receiving specialist neonatal care are actively encouraged and supported to be involved in caring for their baby.
The consultation is available on the NICE website until 5.00pm on Monday 14 June, and allows any interested parties to comment on the draft and help prioritise which statements are most important to support quality improvement. It is part of a larger body of work which will launch the final quality standards on stroke, dementia and VTE (venous thromboembolism) prevention later in the summer.
Val Moore, NICE Implementation Director said: “The draft NICE quality standard on specialist neonatal care distills information from a range of evidence sources in order to define what high-quality specialist neonatal care should look like. The standards will provide the NHS and the public with clear statements and associated measures, which can be used to assess existing practice and improve future services. I would urge all those with an interest in this very specialist area to send in their comments via the NICE website.”
This draft has been issued for consultation; NICE has not yet published the final quality standards to the NHS.
The draft standards are available for consultation on the NICE website until 5.00pm on Monday 14 June.
All eligible comments will be reviewed by the Topic Expert Group and the Programme Board and the standard will be refined in light of this information. The final standards for specialist neonatal care are expected to be published in July 2010.
This page was last updated: 14 May 2010