The Department of Health will this Friday publish a “menu” of measures agreed by senior clinicians for judging the quality of their care.
The list of indicators is to aid and encourage measurement and improvement of NHS care, as proposed in health minister Lord Darzi’s review last year.
Around 150 measures, mostly relevant to acute care, have been selected based on an online survey, regional clinical groups and direct consultation with colleges and specialist associations.
They were picked from a list of 400 existing indicators, based on how widespread they were and on their approval by specialists.
NHS medical director Sir Bruce Keogh said doctors and providers could use it when selecting measures, including those for quality accounts.
He said that although lots of data is collected, mainly through hospital episode statistics and some clinical audits, it is not always clear which is relevant to outcomes.
“If [doctors and providers] pick from that menu they will know [the data] is already widely collected, and therefore can be benchmarked, and the clinical community generally think it has some value,” he said.
Sir Bruce said that while some specialties, such as oncology and cardiology, had several measures, others had few.
These are being encouraged to do more work on measurement through the colleges. Tested indicators will then be added to the menu.
Sir Bruce said he hoped quality accounts, to be published by all acute providers from next year, would be extended to measure individual services.