Quality standard

This quality standard covers diagnosing, assessing and managing osteoarthritis in adults aged over 16. It includes treatment and support, and referral for joint surgery. It describes high-quality care in priority areas for improvement.

This quality standard does not cover joint replacement surgery, which is covered by NICE's quality standard on joint replacement (primary): hip, knee and shoulder.

In October 2022, changes were made to align this quality standard with the updated NICE guideline on osteoarthritis. See update information for details.

How to use NICE quality standards and how we develop them

Quality standards help you improve the quality of care you provide or commission. They apply in England and Wales (see the UK government website and Welsh government website). Decisions on how they apply in Scotland and Northern Ireland are made by ministers in the Scottish government and Northern Ireland Executive.

Find out how to use quality standards and how we develop them. We check our quality standards every August to make sure they are up to date.