Best practice and innovation

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There are several types of resources that are useful for searching for best practice and innovation, some are specific to conditions. For specific conditions please see the North West Primary Care Librarians wiki on Horizon Scanning.

Tips on searching the web:

When searching the internet, suggested terms include…

  • “best practice” / “case stud*” / innovation / pathway* / protocol
  • COMBINE WITH keywords reflecting the topic area you are focusing upon
  • To limit to NHS papers, try combining your results with: (ccg OR nhs). To look for CCG publications add the following to your google search:  site: (note the space before the CCG.)
  • You can search for terms such as “board paper” / “strategy” to help to locate Trust papers

Also have a look at our summary of tips on searching the web.

List of contents

Best practice

PrescQIPP is an NHS funded not-for-profit organisation that supports quality, optimised prescribing for patients. It produces evidence-based resources and tools for primary care commissioners, and a platform to share innovation across the NHS. Includes a number of Webkits – collections of resources around a range of topics including Care Homes, Polypharmacy & deprescribing, transfer of care and self care. Free registration open to NHS organisations (incl CCGs and CSUs).

Academic Health Science Networks (AHSNs) – their goal is to improve patient and population health outcomes by translating research into practice, and develop and implement integrated health care services, through partnership working and collaboration between the NHS, academia, private sector and other external partners. Details are available on the AHSN pages of the NHS England website including a topic areas matrix outlining their programme priorities.

Increasing research and innovation in health and social care DH policy “to encourage health research and use of new technologies” Documents around innovation following Innovation Health and Wealth – Accelerating adoption and diffusion in the NHS (DH Dec 2011) [Archived Content]. The government’s strategic approach to innovation in the reformed NHS. ( Includes the High Impact Innovations outlined in the NHS Operating Framework and timeline for actions.)

Rx for Change – a searchable database from the Canadian Agency for Drugs and Technologies in Health containing current research evidence about intervention strategies used to alter behaviours of health technology prescribing, practice, and use. Helping to inform the choice and use of practical, evidence-based interventions.

UK Clinical Guidelines
A collection of clinical guidelines from a number of organisations in the UK including:

NICE Quality Standards
A set of specific, concise statements that act as markers of high-quality, cost-effective patient care, covering the treatment and prevention of different diseases and conditions.

QIPP resources – Quality, Innovation, Productivity and Prevention – collections of examples of best practice to support the QIPP agenda from across the NHS including:

QIPP case studies – A collection of real examples from NICE of how health and social care staff are improving quality and productivity across the NHS and social care.

Social Care Online
Social Care Online is a free database of social care information. With everything from research briefings, to reports, government documents, journal articles, and websites. You can limit search to good practice in the refine your search section.

PIRAMHIDS – Positive and Innovative Resources: A Mental Health Interactive Database (Scotland)
NHS Quality Improvement Scotland has created this national multi-disciplinary database of positive & innovative practice in elderly mental health services.

News and articles on IT developments in healthcare.

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Horizon scanning

Time to think differently – A programme of work from The King’s Fund aimed at stimulating debate about the changes needed for the NHS and social care to meet the challenges of the future. Includes a Future trends overview  which reviews of some of the most significant trends and drivers that will affect health and social care services over the next 20 years including demography, healthy behaviours, disease and disability, public attitudes and workforce.

E-Watch on Innovation in Health Science a Newsletter from Quebec Population Health Research which brings together innovations from across the world. Email or RSS available.

Innovation – making it happen – NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement
Tools and resources to support innovation in healthcare, including spread and adoption tool.

North West Primary Care Librarians Wiki on Horizon Scanning
A guide on developing horizon scanning bulletins, which concentrate on best practice and innovation in service provision. The wiki includes a section on general searching and websites for specific topics.

NIHR Horizon Scanning Centre aims to provide advanced notice to the English Department of Health and national policy makers of selected key new and emerging health technologies that might require evaluation, consideration of clinical and cost impacts, or modification of clinical guidance up to 2-3 years prior to launch on the National Health Service (NHS) in England. The scope of the horizon scanning activity includes pharmaceuticals, medical devices and equipment, diagnostic tests and procedures, therapeutic interventions, rehabilitation and therapy, and public health activities.

Horizon Scanning Reports from MaDOx – The Oxford Centre for Monitoring and Diagnosis in Primary Care (MaDOx)
“Our aim is to improve monitoring and diagnostics used in Primary care and Community settings.”

These reports “provide an overview of emerging technologies and related clinical advantages with specific reference to patient group and use, assessing importance and documenting previous research.”
(May be blocked by some NHS networks)

SigmaScan  (Part of the Foresight programme)
A searchable repository for horizon scanning papers, designed for government user compiled by the Horizon Scanning Centre condensed into short papers from  more than 6000 document sources and interviews with 300 leading thinkers.

EuroScan International Information Network on New and Emerging Health Technologies
A collaborative network for the exchange of information on important emerging new drugs, devices, procedures, programmes, and settings in health care.

AHRQ Healthcare Horizon Scanning System
A systematic process to identify and monitor target technologies and innovations in health care and to create an inventory of target technologies that have the highest potential for impact on clinical care, the health care system, patient outcomes, and costs.

Monthly Horizon Scanning Reports Regional Drug & Therapeutics Centre
To inform interested parties about new products, significant changes to product licenses, significant new guidance, and decisions that have been made by recognised bodies.

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