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RCN and CQC back call to improve patient admission data


The Royal College of Nursing is among the organisations backing a campaign for hospitals to routinely record simple care information when a patient is admitted, such as the presence of a pressure ulcer.

The data analysis company Dr Foster Intelligence, which publishes the annual Hospital Guide, is calling for a section for “present on admission (POA)” information to be added to routine NHS hospital data collection.

This would mean hospitals would have to record whether each patient had a pressure sore, infection, or an injury from a fall when they were admitted.

When processed the data could be used to give a better picture of the quality of hospital care, and also highlight any potential problems with the community and social care the patient had received previously.

Care Quality Commission chief executive Cynthia Bower has signed a letter to health secretary Andrew Lansley calling on him to ask the NHS Information Centre to implement the change quickly.

The letter is also signed by Royal College of Nursing chief executive Peter Carter, Dr Foster Intelligence and representatives from 16 hospital trusts.

It states: “A POA flag will provide an early warning system in adult social care by identifying from where patients are being admitted, how often and if their condition is an indicator of poor quality of care such as a pressure sore.”

A CQC spokesman said: “We’re supporting this proposal because it will help us to better understand where and how frequently people are being admitted from care homes to hospital with pressure sores and other conditions – information which will feed into our assessments of care providers.”

Another signatory is Commons public accounts committee chair and Labour MP for Barking Margaret Hodge.

Those behind the plan believe it will help meet the recommendation, made in last year’s National Audit Office report on the CQC, that better information should be developed about social care quality.


Readers' comments (4)

  • Can't believe this is not done as a matter of course, during the admission assessment.

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  • don't patients receive a full physical examination and have a full medical case history taken on first admission to hospital? I am really beginning to despair of all the stories in the press and the apparent lack of care of human lives in the very basic and poor British health care system and really begin to wonder what the staff are now trained to actually do and what skills the posess.

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  • This is done on admission on an individual basis. What they are talking about is collating that data so that patterns of repeated problems can lead to the identification of care providers neglecting service users.

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  • is this another paper pushing exercise taking up valuable care time?

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