Doctors under the microscope: the birth of medical audit

Jackson, William J., Paterson, Audrey S., Pong, Christopher K. M. and Scarparo, Simona 2013, Doctors under the microscope: the birth of medical audit, Accounting history review, vol. 23, no. 1, pp. 23-47.

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Title Doctors under the microscope: the birth of medical audit
Author(s) Jackson, William J.
Paterson, Audrey S.
Pong, Christopher K. M.
Scarparo, SimonaORCID iD for Scarparo, Simona
Journal name Accounting history review
Volume number 23
Issue number 1
Start page 23
End page 47
Total pages 25
Publisher Taylor & Francis
Place of publication Abingdon, Eng.
Publication date 2013
ISSN 2155-2851
Keyword(s) medical audit
professional accounting
quality of care
end results
Summary In 1989 a UK government White Paper introduced medical audit as a comprehensive and statutory system of assessment and improvement in quality of care in hospitals. A considerable body of research has described the evolution of medical audit in terms of a struggle between doctors and National Health Service managers over control of quality assurance. In this paper we examine the emergence of medical audit from 1910 to the early 1950s, with a particular focus on the pioneering work of the American surgeons Codman, MacEachern and Ponton. It is contended that medical professionals initially created medical audit in order to articulate a suitable methodology for assessing individual and organisational performance. Rather than a means of protecting the medical profession from public scrutiny, medical auditing was conceived and operationalised as a managerial tool for fostering the active engagement of senior hospital managers and discharging public accountability. These early debates reveal how accounting was implicated in the development of a system for monitoring and improving the work of medical professionals, advancing the quality of hospital care, and was advocated in ways, which included rather than excluded managers.
Language eng
Field of Research 150199 Accounting, Auditing and Accountability not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective 970115 Expanding Knowledge in Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2013, Taylor & Francis
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Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Business and Law
Deakin Business School
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