Quality Assurance Guidance
Making sure the program and processes work
A major focus of CPQR activity has been the development of guidelines for radiation treatment program quality and safety, and indicators for measuring quality and safety on a national scale. The document “Quality Assurance Guidance for Canadian Radiation Treatment Programs”, outlines the overarching organizational structure and processes that are required to assure high quality and safe radiotherapy, together with key quality indicators for programmatic assessment. (HINT: download this document from the sidebar!) The intent of this work was to provide national guidelines and indicators to motivate continuous quality improvement.
The initial document, released in April 2011, received a high level of interest from the radiation oncology community both nationally and internationally. A second version of the document was released in September 2013 that reflected a comprehensive multi-stakeholder validation process using a modified-Delphi approach. This validation practice helped CPQR ensure that the indicators are comprehensive, relevant, evidence based and measurable. A paper on this validation process is being prepared by past CPQR Research Fellow, Dr. Jeffrey Cao.
In 2014 CPQR, the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer, and Accreditation Canada partnered to begin development of a Radiotherapy module for Accreditation Canada’s Qmentum program. This module will adopt many of the indicators contained within the Quality Assurance Guidance document and will help assure long-term sustainability of quality and safety measures in radiation oncology. Performance will be publicly reported to motivate utilization across the country.