Audit / clinical audit report involves an independent review of a practice, process, or performance to establish how well it meets the set standards. It involves measuring clinical care against specific criteria, identifying problems and making changes to practice by recommending solutions for the problems. A maximum of six authors including the corresponding author will be given credit for clinical audit report.
Clinical audit report shall have a structured abstract (Objective, Methods, Results, Conclusions) of up to 300 words and three to six keywords as per MeSH (Medical Subject Headings).
The main manuscript (excluding abstract, references and tables) shall not be more than 3000 words and shall have the following sections: Introduction, Standards, Materials and Methods, Results, Recommendations and Action plan.
Introduction section shall explain the rationale for doing the audit and include background information that is essential to understand the problem.
Standards section shall detail the standards used to compare your practice against. Where possible, published international, national, regional, or local standards / guidelines should be used. These should be quantifiable and related to specific aspects of patient care / management.
Materials and Methods section should describe what data was collected, how it was collected and how it was analyzed. The following points shall be explained:
- The population of your audit report.
- Whether it is a retrospective or prospective audit.
- How these patients were identified.
- Sample size.
- Time period audited.
- The data collection method.
- Who was responsible for data collection.
- The method of data input and analysis
Result section shall include what the data tells about the current practice. The results for each standard should be presented in this section to establish which standards are being met, and which are not. Key results can be presented using graphs to further illustrate, if appropriate. Make sure to include both the number and percentage of cases meeting each standard. For confidentiality reasons it is also important that patients and healthcare staff are not identified. Not more than three tables and one figure/illustration will be allowed. Additional publication fee of Rs. 5,000 / USD 35 will be applicable for each additional figure/illustration. Tables and figures shall be placed within the text at the point of citation.
Recommendation section shall highlight the suggestions made for improving the current practice considering the results. The suggestions shall be objective, based on evidence from the data, realistic, and achievable.
Action plan section shall detail the strategies for implementation to bring the current practice at par with standard practices. Identify who will be responsible to implement the action plan and when it will be implemented. If appropriate a date for a re-audit should be included in order to complete the audit cycle.
A declarations section (with the following subheadings: Authors’ contributions, Conflict of interest, Funding, Acknowledgments) shall be placed after Action plan section and before References.
The manuscript shall be supported by up to 25 references.
It is mandatory to provide institutional / ethical approval letter for the Clinical audit report at the time of submission. The letter shall mention names of all authors, title of the clinical audit report, name of the approving body, and number and date of approval. This shall also be mentioned in the Materials and Methods section of the manuscript.