NICE quality standards are a set of specific, concise statements and associated measures. They set out aspirational, but achievable, markers of high-quality, cost-effective patient care, covering the treatment and prevention of different diseases and conditions. Derived from the best available evidence such as NICE guidance and other evidence sources accredited by NHS Evidence, they are developed independently by NICE, in collaboration with NHS and social care professionals, their partners and service users, and address three dimensions of quality: clinical effectiveness, patient safety and patient experience.
The methods and processes for developing NICE quality standards are described in the healthcare quality standards process guide.
This quality standard has been incorporated into the NICE pathway for drug misuse.
We have produced a summary for patients and carers.
Changes after publication
May 2015: Minor maintenance.
April 2015: Minor maintenance.
April 2014: NICE's original guidance on needle and syringe programmes (NICE public health guidance 18) has been replaced by NICE public health guideline 52. References and links to NICE public health guidance 18 have been updated.
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