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Clinical Effectiveness and Clinical Governance Made Easy.
  1. Prescribing Research Group, Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics
  2. The Infirmary, Liverpool, UK

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    Clinical Effectiveness and Clinical Governance Made Easy. By R Chambers, E Boath. (Pp 171; £18.95.) Radcliffe Primary Care, 2001. ISBN 1-85775-443-3.***

    “Clinical governance” is in vogue at present. Most people have a vague sense that it is about delivering high quality care and about establishing monitoring systems to ensure this is taking place. This book is intended for primary care practitioners and if you are a clinical governance lead in a hospital you are unlikely to find it very helpful. The vast bulk of the book is about the practice of evidence-based medicine, that is, identifying questions, searching for possible answers, and evaluating the literature. This is not novel ground and is better done in, for instance, Sackett's book on how to practice and teach evidence-based medicine. This book does have a simple layout and style that some people might prefer.

    However, on clinical governance it seemed to me to have little to say of note. Its approach seemed largely to be clinical governance as education rather than a health services delivery issue. It makes relatively few practical suggestions about how clinical governance can be delivered on the ground. In general there is a dearth of good quality material on what constitutes clinical governance and how it can be delivered; does this say something about the whole concept? Or just about our problems in applying it?