Measuring harm: a summary of learning from a Health Foundation roundtable

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This report summarises the key themes from a Health Foundation roundtable event on the successes and limitations of current approaches to measuring harm.

The report highlights a number of key themes with practical implications, including:

  • The primary purpose of measurement is to drive improvement. In other words, it is a means to an end and not an end in itself
  • Using measurement for comparison can be valuable in engaging people at all levels in the subject, but this must be done with caution and with appropriate analysis and explanation
  • Measurement is most effective when people are inspired rather than mandated to do it; when there is guidance, resource and support from the leaders of organisations to undertake it, and when frontline staff understand how it will directly lead to improving quality and safety.

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