How is the quality of services assured?
The quality of services provided by NPIS is assured by:
- Appropriate induction, training and assessment of staff;
- Continuing professional development opportunities;
- Formal audit of advice provided;
- The availability of 24h consultant support;
- An annual stakeholder feedback exercise.
TOXBASE is often the first - and sometimes the only - resource consulted by healthcare professionals. It is, therefore, essential to safeguard the accuracy and integrity of the data it contains.
Updating and maintaining the database is a considerable task, shared by all NPIS Units. During 2014/15 alone, 4,092 entries were written or revised and 422 were discontinued or deleted making a total of approximately 17,000 entries reviewed every four years. Each new entry is reviewed by all NPIS Units before going 'live', giving the opportunity for any areas of controversy or uncertainty to be discussed and resolved.
An editing group - including representatives from the NPIS Units and the Public Health England Centre for Radiation, Chemical and Environmental Hazards - meets regularly to debate and agree policy, format and content issues.
NPIS ensures its staff remain up-to-date by producing and circulating a monthly publication, Current Awareness in Clinical Toxicology, containing reviews of key scientific papers relevant to the clinical management of poisoning.
By continuous improvement and discussion, NPIS seeks to ensure the excellence and efficiency of its services, improve the accuracy and clarity of TOXBASE entries, and contribute constructively to the national debate on research and other topical poisons-related issues.