A priority area of the Emergency Care Clinical Network (ECCN) is to enhance the use of evidence-based care to reduce unwarranted variation in clinical practice and improve the consistency of patient care in emergency departments.
The network conducts an annual nine month quality improvement cycle for emergency departments to facilitate the uptake of evidence into practice.
New topics for improvement are identified each year and topics from previous years’ improvement cycles are also offered. Emergency departments respond to an expression of interest process indicating the topic for improvement and their nominated front-line emergency clinician project lead.
The ECCN management team develops the project parameters and project resources including published papers, templates and data collection tools specific to each topic. The network conducts awareness raising activities, project lead training in project management and improvement science. The network provides adhoc support throughout the entire cycle of the project.
Participating emergency departments form their local improvement teams, map the current patient journey or process, identify the evidence practice gap and develop, test and implement changes to address the gap. Project impacts are evaluated by before and after analyses, using point prevalence survey methodology.
Topics offered for improvement by year, since inception, follow.