Accreditation, Industry, Risk & Compliance

Health Care Industry standards change to keep pace with COVID-19

We have recently seen changes to two industry standards in response to the challenges lived and lessons learnt through the COVID-19 pandemic. Organisations that are required to meet the NSQHS and/or NZS 8134:2021 Ngā paerewa Health and disability services standards will now have to provide different evidence as part of the accreditation process. The key changes are outlined below.

NSQHS 2nd Edition – May 2021 

The Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care released an updated version of the National Safety and Quality Health Service Standards (2nd Edition) in May 2021. As expected in this time of pandemic, changes to the standards relate to infection prevention and control.

The NSQHS Standards state: “The 2021 version of the NSQHS Standards (second edition) includes the Preventing and Controlling Infections Standard, which supersedes the NSQHS Preventing and Controlling Healthcare-Associated Infection Standard (2nd ed.). The revision accommodates lessons learned from the response to SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19), and better supports health service organisations to prevent, control and respond to infections that cause outbreaks, epidemics or pandemics, including novel and emerging infections.”

NZS 8134:2021 Ngā paerewa Health and disability services standards

In June 2021, The New Zealand Minister of Health approved the updated NZS 8134:2021 Ngā paerewa Health and disability services standards for use under the Health and Disability Services (Safety) Act 2001.

The 2021 Standards will come into effect on 28 February 2022, with key changes including “strengthened infection prevention and antimicrobial stewardship, including learnings from New Zealand Aotearoa’s experience of the COVID-19 pandemic, an increased focus on supporting service providers to meet Te Tiriti O Waitangi obligations, and strengthened clinical governance, to ensure people’s care and support needs are appropriately met.”

If these standards are relevant to your organisation, you can use LogiqcQMS to generate the evidence report for your next external audit. The Accreditation Register is designed to make it easy to prepare for external audits, and not just the next one. You only need to set up the system once, and the LogiqcQMS can manage it from there. This means you can use the evidence report at any time to give you an understanding of the strength of your processes and areas for improvement.

Standards like these are designed to help organisations implement recognised evidence-based practice. Too often, standards are only used to demonstrate compliance to external auditors where the real value comes when they are used for internal purposes.

Have a question about how these changes might impact your organisation, or want to learn more about using LogiqcQMS for internal audits? Get in touch.