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Professional Standards

The work of the Professional Standards Committee involves developing resources to assist Fellows in developing non-clinical skills required by medical specialists. These skills support their roles as managers, health advocates, scholars, professionals, communicators, medical experts/clinical decision makers and collaborators.

Professional Standards Committee


Practice Accreditation Project

The National Safety and Quality Health Service (NSQHS) Standards were developed by the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care (ACSQHC). They provide a nationally consistent statement of the level of care consumers should be able to expect from health services. The NSQHS Standards drive the implementation and use of safety and quality systems and improve the quality of health service provision in Australia. The 10 standards are:

  1. Governance for safety and quality in health service organisations.
  2. Partnering with consumers.
  3. Preventing and controlling healthcare associated infections.
  4. Medication safety.
  5. Patient identification and procedure matching.
  6. Clinical handover.
  7. Blood and blood products.*
  8. Preventing and managing pressure injuries.*
  9. Recognising and responding to clinical deterioration in acute health care.*
  10. Preventing falls and harm from falls.

* Unlikely to be applicable to ophthalmology.

The standards were endorsed by Australian Health Ministers in September 2011 and are scheduled to be reviewed by 2017. Accreditation and adherence to the standards is mandatory for licensed hospitals and day procedure services, but not currently for ophthalmology practices. RANZCO anticipates that the standards will become mandatory in the future and is taking a proactive approach to promoting and assisting with accreditation.

Project Progress

The NUCLEUS program is set to launch next week on 3 April 2017. The program will be exclusively available to RANZCO members on our website. Once the program has launched, the following NUCLEUS resources will be available to view:

1) The NUCLEUS Program Handbook
This handbook provides an outline of the program itself, assists in understanding the National Safety and Quality Health Service (NSQHS) Standards and explains what is involved in evaluating your practice against the relevant standards.

2) The National Safety and Quality Health Service (NSQHS) Standards
The NSQHS Standards are a set of 10 standards, seven of which are applicable to ophthalmologists. The Standards aim to provide a consistent level of care to patients nationally and outline what patients should be able to expect from health services. Overall, NUCLEUS aims to assist Fellows and their staff to improve the safety and quality of care they provide in their clinics using the NSQHS Standards as a framework.

3) Program Costs and Practice Accreditation Consultants 
Information on additional costs and a list of consultants will also be available to assist Fellows with the practice accreditation process.

4) Templates and Gap Analysis Workbooks
These resources are available for each individual Standard and can be used to develop documentation to meet the NSQHS Standards, and close the ‘gap’ between what already exists in their practice and what is required by the Standards.

If you have any suggestions regarding consultants, would like to volunteer to help other Fellows with the accreditation process, or would like more information, please contact Monica Nation, Manager - Education at mnation@ranzco.edu