Quality improvement module 2: Clinical audit in mental health practice

by Robin Burgess and Rob Chaplin


Last updated: June 2020 by Dr Bosky Nair and Dr Amar Shah


Clinical audit is a simple and effective mechanism for assuring ourselves about quality of care. It has been practised since the middle of the 19th century and has been enshrined in the professional regulations of Royal Colleges and the General Medical Council.


As well as ensuring compliance with minimum standards, clinical audit:


  • is about assessing care against a gold standard to identify opportunities for improvement


  • is a key way for professionals to appraise and improve their own clinical practice


  • is a team-building activity


  • aids attainment of high standards in clinical care.


This module enables practitioners to understand the basics of clinical audit and why they should use it. By the end of the module we hope that you will be able to prepare for and implement a clinical audit within your own practice.


Start the module



College Centre for Quality Improvement


Other modules in this series:


QI essentials by Dr Genevieve Holt and Dr Amar Shah


Organisation theory: conceptual frameworks in a changing context by Professor David Crowther and Dr Miriam Green


Patient safety in mental health by Rachel Grace Paskell


History of quality of healthcare in the UK by Dr Charles Shaw and Adrian Worrall


BJPsych Advances: related articles for CPD Online



Related Advances articles

Download take-home notes to print and annotate


Download take-home notes to print and annotate


This is the second in a series of modules developed in association with the College Centre for Quality Improvement (CCQI).



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