NICE Accreditation - Continuing to raise standards in guidance production

Accreditation helps health and social care professionals identify the most robustly produced guidance available, enabling them to deliver high quality care.

The accreditation programme assesses the quality of the processes guidance producers use to develop their guidance.

To date 89 guidance development processes have gained accreditation; providing over 2470 accredited sources. Organisations whose processes were accredited in 2015 -16 include the Royal College of Ophthalmologists, the Society and College of Radiographers and the Scottish Dental Clinical Effectiveness Committee (SDCEP).

Only guidance and advice from accredited processes is used to develop NICE quality standards. Accredited sources of guidance were used in the development of the ‘Diagnosis and management of hymenoptera venom allergy’ quality standard topic which was published over this period.

There were no assessments through the single guideline programme this year. The single guideline assessment programme is used in exceptional circumstances where individual guidelines have been identified that could be useful for NICE quality standards, if accredited. The assessment of the individual guideline follows the same robust methodology. Application is by invitation only.

First guidelines focused on dental healthcare receive accreditation

This year NICE accredited the process used by NHS Education for Scotland’s Scottish Dental Clinical Effectiveness Programme to develop clinical guidance for dental healthcare.

The Scottish Dental Clinical Effectiveness Programme (SDCEP) is a National Dental Advisory Committee initiative working within NHS Education for Scotland (NES) that supports improvements in the quality of dental care by providing user-friendly guidance on topics that are priorities for dental healthcare.

NICE accredited SDCEP’s process after examining how it was used to develop their guidance. The Accreditation Mark now displayed on SDCEP guidance tells users that they can have high confidence in the quality of the information provided.

Mother and Daughter Brushing Teeth

Professor Jan Clarkson, Director, Scottish Dental Clinical Effectiveness Programme said: “We are delighted to have successfully achieved NICE accreditation for the first guidance process focused on dental healthcare.

“This accreditation provides independent recognition of the rigorous, high quality process that the Scottish Dental Clinical Effectiveness Programme uses to produce guidance and our commitment to improving patient care.”


Accredited guidance is highlighted and available worldwide through the NICE Evidence Search portal.