Archives Disease in Childhood

 New WHO standards for improving the quality of healthcare for children and adolescents

In the last 25 years there has been an increasing recognition of the importance of quality of health services as a public health issue.1 2 Quality in healthcare is now represented in national policies, and demanded by health boards and consumers alike. The drive for quality began with the recognition that hospital-acquired adverse events were frequent, costly and often deadly in high-income countries. Since 2000, in many low-income and middle-income countries, assessments have shown that there was much scope for improving quality in many aspects of paediatric care, especially in district-level and provincial-level hospitals, and experience has grown in how to do this.3–12

Many populations and environments have seen little of the quality of healthcare revolution. This is especially the case in health facilities in...