How we work

Our work is driven by our membership and by our involvement with public and patient bodies. All understand the critical importance of high quality care records and are engaged with us to develop consistent formats and standards - the health and social care system cannot work without an integrated, coherent care record system.

Our joint work is centred on a list of projects, which seek to develop standards for care records in areas such as ambulance handover to A&E, medications needed for patients being discharged from hospitals to GP care, mental health summaries for people being discharged from inpatient care to the GP, and details of diagnostic test results.

How we develop our guidance and standards

  • We create an 'expert user group' of all those who need to be involved in defining a record standard for a particular area of care including the public, carers, patients, organisations that represent their interests, doctors, nurses, social workers and other health professionals.
  • We research literature and current practice and ensure that the standards we define are robust and based on clear evidence of what works best.
  • We conduct workshops and national surveys to ensure that all the issues and angles are explored, everybody's voice is heard and the standards are truly representative of the views of people and professionals across the UK.
  • We work closely with technical teams and IT system suppliers so that our standards are faithfully reflected in implementable systems.
  • We undertake independent assurance and scrutinise our work at every stage to ensure our standards are fit for purpose and worthy of national endorsement.
  • The standard is formally endorsed through sign off by our Advisory Board and the professional bodies represented on it through our members.
  • We keep our standards up to date and reflect current best practice by regularly monitoring, maintaining and updating them.
  • We provide a responsive support service so that we can receive comments, provide help and answer questions from anyone involved in defining or using our standards.

The diagram here provides a top level graphic summary of the way we work: