Quality Assurance (QA) and evaluation are important to ensure effective work and the best outcomes. However, confusion arises over if an activity is research, evaluation or QA as there may be similar research methods used. While not wanting to discourage QA practice with unnecessary obstacles, it is nonetheless recommended that QA activities be subject to a routine and simple review process to identify ethical risks (if any).
Process for determining if a project is Research or a Quality Activity
- Complete Part A (Ethics Screening Checklist) within the ISLHD Ethics Screening Form. If no 'True' responses are identified, then register your project via the Improvement and Innovation Portal (ISLHD Intranet) and upload the completed checklist. No further review is required.
- If one or more 'True' responses are identified, then complete Part B (Project and Ethics Summary), and email the completed document to the ISLHD Research Office (ISLHD-Research@health.nsw.gov.au) along with copies of any surveys, patient consent and information sheets, if applicable.
- The project will be reviewed by members of the ISLHD Low and Negligible Risk Research Review Committee.
- An email will be issued advising if the project either complies with the NSW Health Guideline 2007_020 – Human Research Ethics Committees - Quality Improvement & Ethical Review: A Practice Guide for NSW (GL2007_020) and no further ethical review is required, or alternatively you will be referred to the ISLHD Research Office for further advice
If the email advises that the project complies with the GL007_020, you can use this email for publication purposes.
Projects deemed as Quality Activity should be registered with the ISLHD Improvement and Innovation Portal on the ISLHD intranet, and approved by relevant Heads of Department prior to commencement.