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New standards aim to reduce variations in care and improve the health outcomes and quality of care for infants children and young people wiht gastroenterology hepatology and nutrition disorders.

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The RCPCH has partnered with the British Society of Paediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition (BSPGHAN) to develop new standards for paediatric gastroenterology, hepatology and nutrition. The purpose of the quality standards is to reduce variation in care, ensuring equitable services are available for all infants, children and young people and to improve the health outcomes and quality of life for children with gastroenterology, liver or intestinal disorders throughout the UK.

The nine standards have been built around the requirement for the full portfolio of specialist gastroenterology, hepatology and nutrition services to be provided within clinical networks.

Future vision for paediatric gastroenterology, hepatology and nutrition

  • Improving clinical outcomes and reducing variation in care will be best progressed and facilitated by services being commissioned, planned, delivered and evaluated through funded clinical networks.
  • Providing telehealth services for patients and families will enable regular monitoring of patients who have long term health needs and will improve access to care for patients who live in geographically remote locations.
  • Networks will facilitate the co-location of other subspecialties in order to manage the complex needs of patients with gastroenterology, liver and complex nutrition needs.



The Paediatric Gastroenterology team in Southampton has been regularly participating in the national paediatric IBD audit and is again contributing to this year’s IBD audit round. In 2012, the Royal College of Physicians organised a QIP visit to Southampton concluding that Southampton offered excellent quality of services offered in the centre identifying factors which should continue to improve. The Southampton team with paediatric gastroenterology colleagues in Addenbrooke's, Cambridge designed and formulated a proposal of a report to be used on QIP visits nationally. This was presented in the ESPGHAN 2013 meeting as an abstract and was very well received.

The QIP visit did not just include an assessment of the care and treatment of children with IBD in the centre, but identified and assessed effective networking as part of this process. Dr Reynella Morenas (Paediatric consultant in Winchester) gave her views on this service provided in the region. Parents of patients looked after by the team were also invited on the day who gave their views as well, which remains the most crucial aspect and basis of any attempts to formulate a quality service.