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FFFAP Strategy: Improving quality in Falls and Fragility Fracture Audit Programme (FFFAP) services

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The Falls and Fragility Fracture Audit Programme (FFFAP) is a national clinical audit run by the Royal College of Physicians (RCP). It is committed to improving patient outcomes and the efficiency of care that patients with fragility fractures and inpatient falls receive in acute and primary care settings, and to facilitating QI initiatives.

There are over 300,000 fragility fractures in England and Wales every year in patients aged 50 years and over. This includes 66,668 hip fractures. This has a life-changing impact on the patient and their family, as well as presenting a significant and largely avoidable cost burden to the health and social care system.

A major challenge for the NHS is the translation of evidence-based therapies into routine care that is effective, efficient and provides a good patient experience. Quality improvement is the most effective and efficient way to achieve this. Central to quality improvement is the timely provision of reliable data about care delivery. The audit programme provides this data to help drive improvement within the NHS for the benefit of patients and those working to deliver care. Engagement with clinicians, patients and commissioners (both local and national) and regional networks is therefore essential to ensure the data collected remains relevant to support improvements. Clinical audit overall aims to ensure healthcare is being provided in line with evidence-based standards across all models of care and enables care providers and patients to know which aspects of the service are being done well and which could be improved.

The overarching aim of this strategy is to empower stakeholders across England and Wales to use audit data collected as part of the FFFAP to inform and develop quality improvement (QI) initiatives. This in turn will facilitate improvements in patient outcomes for fragility fracture and bone healthcare at national, regional, site/service and patient levels.