European institutional accreditation of general thoracic surgery
To improve standardization of general thoracic surgery (GTS) practice across Europe, the European Society of Thoracic Surgeons (ESTS) has implemented a program of Institutional Accreditation. We reviewed the methods and rules of engagement of this program. A composite performance score (CPS) including outcome and process indicators is used to measure institutional performance and assess eligibility for accreditation. Eligible units are invited to participate and accept a local audit performed by an external auditors team composed by data inspectors and thoracic surgeons. In addition to data quality, a series of structural, procedural and qualification characteristics are inspected. Once the visit is complete, the team will produce an audit report to be sent to the members of the database committee for deliberation on the institutional accreditation of that unit. The Database committee will send an executive report to the ESTS Executive Committee for their final decision on the accreditation.