NAIF: transition to continuous audit

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The National Audit of Inpatient Falls (NAIF) is transitioning from its previous methodology – snapshot audit in 2015 and 2017 – to a new methodology to enable continuous audit.

The new audit will focus on patients who sustain a hip fracture while in hospital. The scope of this audit will also widen to include not only acute hospitals but also community and mental health hospitals. The continuous audit will be introduced incrementally, starting with a condensed preliminary dataset which will begin data collection from 1 January 2019.

How to participate

All acute, community, mental health trusts and university health boards in England and Wales are being invited to participate in both stage one and two of this audit.

The falls lead in your trust/health board will need to complete the registration form below and return it to by Sunday 30 June 2019.

The form is for both the organisational audit, which will take place on 1–31 December 2018, as well as for the clinical audit, which will be ongoing from 1 January 2019. If you do not have a falls lead in your trust/health board, an alternative lead should be registered as the key contact for the audit, for example a patient safety or clinical audit lead.

Stage one timeline

  • 14 September – 30 June 2019: registration period for the audit.
  • 1–30 February 2019: organisational audit open for completion. The organisational audit is directed towards trust-level data. The data collected is around the structure and services within the organisation, and is not patient-level data. The organisational section should be the same for each hospital within your trust (or health board). In the unlikely event that you do not have trust-wide policies or this data is not available by trust, please contact or telephone +44 (0)20 3075 1511.
  • 1 January 2019: first stage of the continuous clinical audit begins. In stage one there will only be five audit questions to answer about these patients. The data should be entered within 30 days of receiving the email prompt. The falls lead should ensure that:
    • individuals who will be responsible for inputting audit data are registered to participate in NAIF by this date
    • those who need to access the web tool are able to
    • the list of registered users at the site is up to date.
    • the trust/health board responds to prompts to complete audit questions about patients who have fallen and fractured their hip while in their trust/health board.
  • Before 30 June 2019: By this date falls leads should ensure all the data for identified patients have been entered to the new NAIF web tool (all five questions should be answered for each identified patient). Data collected between 1 January and 30 June 2019 will form the basis of the first NAIF continuous audit summary report, to be published in spring 2020.
  • After 30 June 2019: Falls leads should continue to ensure data on these five questions is inputted to the web tool within 30 days of receiving an email alert informing them about a qualifying patient.

Please note that falls leads do not have to personally input all the data, but are responsible for ensuring that the actions are completed. There can be some flexibility in terms of who inputs the data into the web tool in different organisations. Falls leads are encouraged to develop ways of completing this audit that work in their local context.

Stage two

The second stage of the audit will begin in January 2020 and will involve the launch of the new full version of the NAIF continuous audit. From January 2020 the dataset for NAIF will extend to include an audit of both falls prevention activity prior to the hip fracture and post-falls care.

The specific criteria for stage two of the audit will be released in due course. If you have any queries about the audit please contact us by email:

Using the web tool

All data input will take place via the online web tool. Copies of the organisational and patient component dataset will be available to download prior to the audit start date. For more information, please refer to the 'how to guide' at the bottom of the page. A promotional leaflet is also available to download.

To enable you to complete the clinical audit we will create a login for you to access the web tool. Accounts will be active from January 2019 when the clinical audit begins and you will receive instructions on how to log in.

NAIF is included in the HQIP 2018–19 listing for national audits that must be reported in the trust’s quality account and also forms part of the National Clinical Audit Patient Outcomes Programme (NCAPOP).

Who's involved


  • British Geriatrics Socierty
  • British Orthopaedic Association
  • National Osteoporosis Society
  • Patient and Carer Network
  • Public Health England
  • Healthcare Quality Improvement Partnership