Health systems around the world are investing increasing effort in monitoring care quality and safety. Dashboards can support this process, providing summary data on processes and outcomes of care, making use of data visualization techniques such as graphs. As part of a study exploring development and use of dashboards in English hospitals, we interviewed senior managers across 15 healthcare providers. Findings revealed substantial variation in sophistication of the dashboards in place, largely presenting retrospective data items determined by national bodies and dependent on manual collation from a number of systems. Where real time systems were in place, they supported staff in proactively managing quality and safety.
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