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A quality assurance programme developed by RCPI and RCSI will help standardise gastro-intestinal endoscopy services across Ireland.

The Royal College of Physicians of Ireland (RCPI) and the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) have launched a National Quality Assurance Programme in Gastro-Intestinal Endoscopy.

The National Quality Assurance Programme in Gastro-Intestinal Endoscopy, developed in collaboration with the HSE’s National Cancer Control Programme (NCCP) and the National Cancer Screening Service (NCSS), will require participating endoscopy units to measure and assess their performance against intelligent targets.

The programme focuses on the quality of work carried out by individual endoscopists (doctors and surgeons who carry out internal examinations of the digestive tract). All public and private units across the country have been invited to participate in the programme.

Guidelines for implementing quality assurance in endoscopy units have been drawn up launched to endoscopists, endoscopy nurses and hospital CEOs from all over Ireland at a half-day workshop on Monday 10 October. Implementation guidelines focus on how to embed quality assurance in routine clinical practice. At the workshop on 10 October, attendees will be encouraged to discuss the implementation process and share solutions.

Dr Stephen Patchett, Consultant Gastroenterologist at Beaumont Hospital and a member of the working group that developed the programme, said, “The launch of the quality assurance programme will have a very significant impact on the quality of endoscopy provided to patients in Ireland. Physicians and surgeons have worked together to produce clear guidelines designed to improve both quality and safety in upper and lower gastrointestinal endoscopy. This is a very important and most welcome development in view of the increasing demands for endoscopy in the symptomatic population and in the setting of a national colon cancer screening programme.”

Prof John Hyland, Consultant Surgeon at St Vincent’s University Hospital and also a member of the working group that developed the programme, said, “The development of the endoscopy QA programme is of immense importance to the Irish public and will result in guaranteed high quality care throughout the country. The committed involvement of both physicians and surgeons cannot be underestimated, and is evidence of cooperation in the interest of patients.”


About RCPI
The mission of The Royal College of Physicians of Ireland (RCPI) is to develop and maintain high professional standards in specialist medical practice in order to achieve optimum patient care and to promote health nationally and internationally. Through its Faculties and Committees, RCPI has responsibility for the postgraduate education and training of doctors in Ireland in twenty-five medical specialties. RCPI is fully committed to playing a full and proactive part in the transformation of the health service, as evidenced by its involvement in many strategic initiatives with the Medical Council, the Health Service Executive, the Department of Health and Children, and other Irish postgraduate medical training bodies.

About RCSI

The Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) is a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to improving human health through education, research and service.  Founded in 1784, originally to train surgeons, today it also provides extensive education and training in the healthcare professions at both undergraduate and postgraduate level.


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