Department of Health and Social Care
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NHS ready for PROM date

NHS ready for PROM date

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH News Release issued by COI News Distribution Service. 6 February 2009

- New guidance to support collection of patient reported outcome measures from April 2009 -

New guidance that will support the NHS to collect patient feedback on the success of their operations was published today by the Department of Health.

Lord Darzi first set out proposals for the routine collection of Patient Reported Outcome Measures (PROMs) in his report High Quality Care for All in June last year. It is a method for collecting information on the clinical quality of care as reported by patients themselves. Patients answer the same set of questions on their quality of life before and after an operation. The comparable data is then used to calculate a numerical value for the improvement to their health.

From April 2009, all licensed providers of hip replacements, knee replacements, groin hernia surgery and varicose vein surgery will be expected to invite patients undergoing one of these procedures to complete a pre-operative PROMs questionnaire. A contractor will then be responsible for collecting the pre-operative data and administering post-operative questionnaires. Research is underway to identify other areas where PROMs may be feasible.

The new PROMs guidance sets out in detail:

* The procedures for which PROMs data should be collected;

* Details of the national PROMs questionnaires;

* Roles and responsibilities of the different organisations involved in the delivery of the PROMs programme;

* A step-by-step guide to the administration of PROMs questionnaires

Health Minister Lord Darzi said:

"While a surgeon may judge a hip replacement successful because the procedure has been performed perfectly on the day, the patient will rightly disagree if they are still in pain and continue to have a poor quality of life six months down the line.

"The beauty of PROMs is that it measures the success of operations as reported by patients themselves. This programme is the first of its kind in the world and the information collected will empower patients to choose a hospital that achieves the best results for the operation they need.

"It will also strengthen commissioning across the NHS by offering PCTs the evidence they need to buy the best services based on patient experiences. What's more, routine collection of PROMs will enable clinical teams to benchmark their performance and research the success of different treatment options."

Notes to editors:

1. A PDF copy of the PROMs guidance and copies of the questionnaires are available from the Department of Health website:

2. It is predicted that 250,000 people will be asked to fill out a PROMs questionnaire in 2009/10.

3. We expect to have robust, comparable PROMs data - adjusted for case mix - within a year for orthopaedic procedures and nine months for general surgery procedures. The information will be available to the public on the NHS Choices website.

4. The London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine conducted a PROMs pilot at 24 sites. Evidence showed excellent participation rates with 80% of patients completing the pre-op questionnaire and 80% of those patients completing the post-op questionnaire. A copy of the final report can be found at:

5. The Department of Health is proceeding with Northgate Information Solutions Limited as its preferred bidder for Administration and Data aggregation PROMs services, and Market and Opinion Research International Limited as its preferred bidder for Analysis PROMs services. The current expectation is that contracts will be signed during the course of this month.

6. For media enquiries only, please contact the Department of Health Newsdesk on 020 7210 5221.

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