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Implementing the National Safety and Quality Health Service Standards

The primary aim of the National Safety and Quality Health Service (NSQHS) Standards is to protect the public from harm and to improve the quality of health service provision. The NSQHS Standards outline safety and quality outcomes that a health service organisation must achieve, while giving organisations the flexibility to decide how to achieve these outcomes in a way that is appropriate for their context. The second edition of the NSQHS Standards was approved by health ministers in 2017, and assessment against this edition started from January 2019.

All hospitals and day procedure services are required to implement the NSQHS Standards. They must implement organisation-wide safety and quality processes, and a comprehensive clinical governance framework. With the NSQHS Standards and a clinical governance framework in place, health service organisations can reduce the risk of harm to patients from hospital-acquired infections, the wrong medicines and errors associated with lapses in communication, and improve the provision of comprehensive care and management of an acutely deteriorating patient.