Better Health, Better Metrics

For this project, we worked with a number of Primary Care Trusts (PCTs) that wished to address the health inequalities experienced by people with learning disabilities, using the NHS scheme Better Metrics. We also worked with PCTs' partner organisations.

The NHS Better Metrics scheme developed clinically relevant measures of performance that can be used as part of local service quality improvement. The scheme included 12 metrics on health equity and access for people with learning disabilities.

The PCTs and services we worked with covered a mix of urban and rural areas and ethnically diverse populations. Each site chose a few of the metrics to work on. Between all the sites, the full set of learning disability metrics were tested.

We supported the project sites through:

  • helping local leaders to enthuse and enlist allies
  • facilitating meetings and maintaining momentum
  • sharing learning and ideas across the sites
  • supporting the development of local tools and adaptation of national materials
  • evaluating progress and advising on national changes required.

We used the learning from the project to write:

  • a guide for commissioners of primary health care services
  • a guide for Overview and Scrutiny Committees, which ask questions about the quality of local health care as well as community wellbeing and public health. This guide is one of a series that aims to help committees ask good questions.

During the project we made contact with Clinical Knowledge Summaries (a system for giving GPs information about all sorts of health problems). Through Clinical Knowledge Summaries GPs can download information for their patients to take away. We asked Easyhealth to work with Clinical Knowledge Summaries to produce easy read information for people with learning disabilities about some common health problems.