THE STANDARDS CONFORMANCE PROCESS
The Quality Partnership Scheme provides the foundations for interoperability which will ultimately ensure health and care records reach a standard of information that can be accessed by the right people, in the right place, at the right time.
Suppliers who join the scheme will be assessed for conformance against chosen PRSB standards. The conformance process provides crucially important information for supplier’s customers, the wider system and the supplier themselves.
What is a PRSB standard?
PRSB work with the public and professionals to define the standards needed for good care records. PRSB standards comprise of an Information Model. This is a list of data items such as a person’s GP details or their list of medical conditions and these are classified as:
- Mandatory – The information that must be included (documented)
- Required – If it exists, the information must be included
- Optional – A local decision is made as to whether the information is included
Each data item has associated information, which might be an NHS Data Dictionary or SNOMED code or free text. PRSB standards also include a set of business rules. These are found in the accompanying documentation for a standard and include the Implementation Guidance, a Hazard Log and Safety Case report.
How is a supplier assessed for standard conformance?
Conformance is assessed through a mixture of self-assessment by the supplier accompanied by a review, challenge and validation from a PRSB health or care expert. The health or care expert also runs test cases through the supplier’s system to provide direct evidence.
A PRSB internal panel reviews all the outputs and agrees the final outcome of the assessment. The results are published in validated Conformance and Quality Reports. The final materials are shared between PRSB and the supplier themselves, and are not public documents.
By participating in an assessment, a supplier can engage in dialogue and challenge about specific areas of standards that are missing, not used, or require amendment. PRSB recognises the value of this process in driving uptake and adherence to standards in health and care systems and ensuring standards are fit for purpose and work effectively.
What are the criteria for conformance?
To be considered for a Quality Mark, a suppliers system must:
- Conform with all the ‘must have’ data items and business rules for a standard and the ‘must have’ organisational assurance criteria
- Implement at least 40% of all data items in the standard
Achieving the minimum bar (40%) means that a supplier achieving the Quality Mark has demonstrated an instance of the standard that is safe and effective. Higher percentages of conformance (50-69% and 70% and above) shows how far the supplier has gone between the minimum and ‘best practice’.