NHS target culture

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NHS target culture2016-12-04T23:11:47+00:00

NHS target culture 

MEDSPEAK-UK

A UK term of art referring to the focusing by managers in NHS organisations on objective and tangible goals (“tick boxes”)

Examples, NHS targets

• Financial targets–e.g., cutting an annual budget by £5 million

• Time targets–e.g., being seen within 4 hours by a doctor or nurse in A&E/ER or beginning definitive cancer therapy with 31 days of urgent GP referral.

The problem with the focus on targets is that they may be pursued to the exclusion of non-target—but equally objective—measures of care quality, including changing of bed linen, responding to call alarms, etc. 

Synonyms Target culture, target mentality 

References www.telegraph.co.uk/health/healthnews/5460788/Patients-with-suspected-cancer-forced-to-wait-so-NHS-targets-can-be-hit.html
www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/7123434/NHS-target-culture-blamed-for-rising-readmissions.html

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