1st July 2014

You will all be aware of the current concerns about the use of vaginal mesh products in incontinence and prolapse surgery which have been raised in the media and more recently in the Scottish and UK Parliaments. Over the last 18 months BSUG have been working very closely with a number of organizations including NHS England, the RCOG and BAUS to address these concerns. The joint letter you recently received from the Presidents of the RCOG, BSUG, EUGA and IUGA summarises our current position.
One of the principle concerns raised by campaigners and politicians has been the lack of available outcome data for individual surgeons performing this type of surgery. (Although use of the BSUG database is recognised, only a small percentage of surgeons doing this type of surgery enter their data on the database). As part of the response to these concerns, NHS England through HQIP (Healthcare Quality Improvement Partnership) decided that one of the mandatory national clinical audits for this year’s Consultant Outcomes Publication (COP) would be stress incontinence surgery. Professor Sir Bruce Keogh, NHS Medical Director wrote to all Medical Directors to this effect on 22nd May 2014.
HQIP have instructed BSUG to co-ordinate this process and we have been working closely with them over the last few months in setting out the criteria and time frame for this audit. The purpose of this letter is to give you advance warning that this audit will be going live in the next few days and a letter to that effect will be going to all Medical Directors in England later this week. The closing date for submission of data is 10th August 2014.
The upshot is that all surgeons, both gynaecologists and urologists, carrying out stress incontinence surgery in England will be expected to produce their personal results for the period 1st January 2013 to 31st December 2013 which will then be analysed and published on 16th October 2014. As with all COP projects, these results will be published by individual surgeons and trusts in the public domain. Those not submitting data will be equally identifiable.
Please note this audit is only mandated in England. Members in Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland are not required to take part in this process but are welcome to enter their data voluntarily if they so wish.
How to submit audit data
We have created an additional HQIP only tab on the database which covers all the questions relating to this audit. A downloadable user manual for this function is accessible on the page. 
Existing BSUG database users
·         Data already entered into the audit database will automatically populate the relevant HQIP sections therefore for members already using the database fully there should be very little additional work.
·         However we would encourage all users to go back and check their data entries for 2013 to make sure it is accurate and complete.
·         You will still need to register for HQIP - Please contact Amanda King, BSUG Database Administrator and request access to HQIP.
·         Remember the main audit database is now only accessible on a NHS link computer via an N3 connection.
       ( Your password will not work on the   
BSUG members not using the database
·         You can request access to the database in the usual way and retrospectively enter your data on the HQIP page.
·         Please contact Amanda King, BSUG Database Administrator, at and request access to the database and HQIP.
·         Alternatively you can follow the same pathway which has been set up for non-BSUG members (see below). Please note that if you intend to enter your data this way it will not appear on the N3 version of the database so you would have to re- enter the data on the N3 database if you wish to continue once HQIP is finished.
Non -BSUG members
·         To enable all gynaecologists and urologists performing stress incontinence surgery to participate in this audit BSUG has made available a special COP section of its database available to non-BSUG members.
·         Please visit and follow the on-screen instructions to register for the service
·         A valid NHS email address and your GMC number will be required, so that identities can be verified. Each surgeon will only have access to his or her own data.
·         Data entered on this site must not contain patient identifiable information so please use date of birth and a random numbering system that you choose. You can download BSUG/HQIP userguide here.
As part of the development of this project we have appointed Amanda King as our database administrator. We are very pleased to welcome Amanda onto the BSUG team and she will be the main point of contact if you have any queries (email or call the BSUG office0207 772 6211). As you can imagine we are expecting a high volume of queries over the next few weeks as this goes live so please be patient. Amanda will endeavour to get back to you within 2 working days of any query.
Finally, please remember that you need to be a paid up BSUG member to use the full database. If you have not renewed your subscription this year then please do so as soon as possible.
We do hope all this is clear and you understand the reasoning behind this audit. Whilst we have been working very closely with the various Government bodies to fine tune this project, the details of the process and the timelines have been beyond our control.
BSUG Officers
You can download letter to Medical Directors here.

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