Clinical Governance

clinical governance frameworks

Clinical Governance

is the term used to describe the framework through which healthcare is accountable, utilising a systematic approach, to improving the quality of services, and a result patient care.

So, what sort of systematic approach you ask! And who sets the benchmark for the quality of services provided? 


The word excellence is often used alongside quality.

In the context of Clinical Governance, we make reference to National Standards of care, that are evidence based and demonstrate risk management strategies. There are many standards to measure against in healthcare: financial, management key performance indicators, National standards, industry-based quality indicators, and other standardised systems of data collection. Which one is correct? In context, they are all correct, for their specific industry, at that time, in that place. We do not expect those caring for newborns to have the same approach as those caring for trauma emergencies. Hence the standards we measure against can depend on the industry or sector within which we work. 


In other words, it is doing the right thing, at the right time, by the right person, in the safest way possible.

Clinical Governance identifies importance of governance, leadership, culture, patient safety systems, clinical performance and the care environment in care systems and care delivery.

Stay focused on the goalpost of Clinical Governance, to ensure high standards of patient care.

By design this will elicit the best outcome for the patient, meeting the patient’s wishes, utilising suitable risk management strategies. However, such an outcome requires appropriately trained and resourced individuals and teams. Whilst health care in general are aligning themselves with this approach now; it did not start here. 


Stephen Covey, who in 1989 published a book “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People”, changed the way management, and those aiming for management, looked at it and then acted. In hindsight we can see more clearly, how these principles of utilising appropriate resources and appropriate skills for the best patient outcome, are of course the only way to practise.

Clinical Governance relies on Corporate Governance Systems in place.