Quality and Safety Special Interest Group


Role of the Quality and Safety Special Interest Group:

The Quality and Safety Special Interest Group (QSSIG) was founded in 2016 and exists to provide a forum to share information on a variety of issues with regard to Quality Management and Patient Safety and to make recommendations to IFEM regarding the future directions of Quality and Safety in Emergency Medicine (EM).


Functions of the Group:

  • Provide a forum for networking and the exchange of information and views between individuals with a particular interest in Quality in EM.
  • To foster collaboration between individuals with an interest in Quality and Safety in EM, for use by IFEM members. This includes a view to utilisation of the IFEM Quality Framework for Emergency Departments (EDs); the identification of tools for improving patient safety in EDs; fostering and supporting quality improvement metrics and outcomes in EDs and the education of staff and standards of practice within the ED
  • To promote enhancement and a culture of patient safety and quality management amongst emergency physicians.


Objectives of the Group:

  • To maintain the currency and relevance of the recently reviewed Quality Framework document
  • To promote the quality framework standards, including guideline documents or a tool kit to assist in a practical approach for the implementation of the framework across a broad spectrum and settings where EM is practiced
  • To identify outstanding issues of concern with regard to patient safety and quality management in the global EM community
  • To assimilate useful Quality and Safety resources for clinical indicators, guidelines and practice change
  • To partake in international meetings such as IFEM and lead preconference workshops and sessions focused on quality and patient safety in EDs and overall for EM
  • To make recommendations to IFEM with regard to the future of EM practice with regards to Quality and Safety

Expressions of interest are invited to join the Special Interest Group. Nominations by your organization, or self-nominations by individuals within your organization, should be forwarded to the IFEM secretariat via our contact form. Please include a brief summary of your interests and potential strengths and curriculum vitae. 

Terms of Reference


Key Projects and Achievements 

A key achievement over the past 12 months has been the Production of an Updated Quality Framework document. The key areas of focus in the updated Quality Framework are:

What patients should expect from an Emergency Department

  • Expertise in critical care in collaboration with colleagues from anaesthesia and intensive care
  • Early access to specialist inpatient and outpatient services to ensure appropriate ongoing evaluation and treatment of patients
  • Appropriate duration of stay in the ED to maximise patient care and comfort and to optimise clinical outcomes
  • Development of additional services alongside core ED activity

Enablers and barriers to quality care

  • Staff
  • Physical structures
  • ED Processes
  • Co-ordinated emergency care throughout the patient pathway
  • Monitoring of outcomes


  • Crowding (or overcrowding) is inconsistently defined and measured, but ideally should comprise a combination of non-flow items (such as ED occupancy) and flow items (such as length of stay).

Quality Indicators

  • Audits
  • Quality improvement resources and processes
  • Incident monitoring
  • Guidelines
  • Morbidity and mortality review
  • Integration and communication with ambulance, hospital specialities and primary care