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NSQHS Standards Guide for Dental Practices and Services

The NSQHS Standards

Accreditation

 


 

NSQHS Standards Guide for Dental Practices and Services

The Commission has released the NSQHS Standards Guide for Dental Practices and Services to support dental practices and services improve the safety and quality of care using the National Safety and Quality Health Service (NSQHS) Standards as a framework for improvement.

The NSQHS Standards Guide for Dental Practices and Services provides support for private dental practices and public oral health services implementing the NSQHS Standards and promotes a consistent and shared understanding of the Standards. The development of the guide has been a collaborative process with dental practitioners and dental sector stakeholders nationally. The content of the guide has been developed and reviewed by dentists from both public and private sectors, and developed in consultation with the Australian Dental Association Inc.

The guide contains information on:

  • preparing for accreditation
  • approaches to improving quality and managing risk using the framework of the NSQHS Standards
  • the national accreditation scheme
  • strategies to implement NSQHS Standards 1-6 in dental settings.

The NSQHS Standards Guide for Dental Practices and Services is available for download using the following link:
Accreditation and the NSQHS Standards – Resources to implement the NSQHS Standards – Accreditation workbooks

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The NSQHS Standards

The Commission developed the NSQHS Standards as part of the national accreditation scheme for health service organisations, the Australian Health Service Safety and Quality Accreditation (AHSSQA) scheme. The primary aim of the NSQHS Standards is to protect the public from harm and to improve the quality of care provided in hospital, day procedure and dental settings.

The accreditation scheme commenced in January 2013, when accreditation to the NSQHS Standards became mandatory for the majority of public dental services and voluntary for private dental practices. All hospitals and day procedure centres are also being assessed against the NSQHS Standards, to ensure the same standards for safety and quality are being used across Australia.

The NSQHS Standards encompass 10 areas where it is known that people are harmed as a result their health care and where there is good evidence of how to provide better care. Of these, only NSQHS Standards 1 – 6 apply to dental practices, the remaining NSQHS Standards do not directly relate to the care provided in dental practices.

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Accreditation

Accreditation processes check and ensure that a dental practice has systems and processes in place to improve the safety and quality of care for patients. The process for a dental practice to become accredited involves:

  • Self-assessment of performance against the NSQHS Standards 1 – 6
  • An independent agency reviewing the dental practice
  • The dental practice making suggested changes as part of a continuous quality improvement approach, and monitoring ongoing performance.

Further information about the process of accreditation can be found using the link below:
Accreditation and the NSQHS Standards – Information for health service organisations – Steps for implementing the NSQHS Standards

Public Dental Services

For the majority of public dental services, accreditation to the NSQHS Standards is mandatory. To determine whether your clinic or service needs to be accredited to the NSQHS Standards, please contact your state or territory health department. Contact details for state and territory health departments can be found using the following link:
Accreditation and the NSQHS Standards – Resources to implement the NSQHS Standards – Contact details

Private Dental Practices

For private dental practices, accreditation to the NSQHS Standards is voluntary. The Australian Dental Association Inc. supports dental practices participating in accreditation to the NSQHS Standards by an approved accrediting agency. Please contact the Australian Dental Association Inc. for further information: accreditation@ada.org.au.

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Last updated: 25 February 2016