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ABCD: Audit and Best Practice for Chronic Disease

Project summary

This continuous quality improvement (CQI) project aims to enhance health outcomes by assisting Indigenous primary health care centres to improve their systems for delivery of best practice care. Focused initially on chronic disease, the 12 original participating health care centres in the Top End achieved significant improvements in quality of care and diabetes outcomes for clients. The current extension phase of the project is targeting a wider range of primary health care priorities and incorporating the ABCD approach into routine practice. Project staff work with health centre staff to identify strengths and weaknesses in their systems, set goals for improvement, develop strategies to achieve these goals, and then assess the effectiveness of these strategies.

Summary of outcomes

Summary of project implementation

Long-term research/service/policy partnerships, such as the one established through the CRC for Aboriginal Health, have been critical to the success of the ABCD Project. They were important in developing appropriate quality improvement (QI) processes and tools, achieving engagement of Indigenous primary care services and in demonstrating the benefit of a national resource to support development and implementation of QI systems. There is a need for national resources to coordinate these functions, and QI initiatives in Indigenous primary health care more broadly. The ABCD Project provides a solid foundation for such a resource.

Key findings/messages

The Audit and Best Practice in Chronic Disease (ABCD) research project has led to the establishment of One21seventy, a not-for-profit entity that provides tools, training and support for primary health care centres and providers to use the One21seventy CQI cycle, CQI audit and systems assessment tools, and on-line data services for easy interpretation and reporting. The One21seventy website gives more information about the outcomes of the ABCD project.

Related resources: 
Project leader

Professor Ross Bailie

Ms Michelle Dowden

Administering institution:

Menzies School of Health Research

Completion date:

June 2010