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National Reference Center, Czech Republic

The National Reference Center (NRC) is a special-interest association of legal entities astablished with the primary purpose of monitoring the quality and effectiveness of healthcare provided on the Czech Republic. The NRC was establish on September , 2003.

Presently, the NRC´s member base includes all medical insurance companies operating in the Czech Republic (9 in total) and some associations of the institutional healthcare provider. The platform plays an exceptional role in the Czech public medical insurance system, with the range of its activities including the following:

  1. Collect and process data received from healthcare payers and providers
  2. Determine basic parameters required for DRG system operation
  3. Create DRG methodological documentation, collect and distribute information required for the proper use of the system by medical insurance companies and acute inpatient care providers
  4. Monitor clinical and economic indicators of the public medical insurance system
  5. Monitor indicators of healthcace quality and effectiveness of healthcare facilities
  6. Cooperate with specific medical insurance companies and healthcare facilities


NRC undertook tasks focused on development of national sets of clinical guidelines and quality indicators in the last two years. To establish an effective tool for the Czech healthcare system, we harnessed experience of many competent institutions in the sector of guidelines and quality indicators development, such as AHRQ, NHS, HAS, SIGN, GGMBH etc. Our system is based on the principle of systematic use of some of the existing components in the Czech healthcare system, uses its own methodology with “life cycle” of guidelines and indicators development, EBM methodology, process algorithmization and systematic derivation of the quality indicators from clinical criteria and clinical recommendations. The Czech healthcare system uses comprehensive national “administrative” databases, but also many extensive “clinic-specific” databases. We use these data for designing and testing quality and performance indicators in coordination with clinical guidelines development. It has been two years since we started assessing significant benefits especially in cancer prevention and introducing arrangements enhancing care in some specialties (especially in oncology, cardiology, and stroke management), while simultaneously developing guidelines and indicators.

Contacts us

To find out more about activities and outputs, you can request information through the following:

Národní referenční centrum (National Reference Center)

Vinohradská 112 Praha 3  130 00, Czech Republic

Tel.: +420 221 752 108, fax: +420 272 654 299

Web:, E-mail:


The Council for Quality of Healthcare (Regieraad Kwaliteit van Zorg), The Netherlands

The Council for Quality of Healthcare was already introduced and explained in the enGINe newsletter of March in the country update about the Netherlands. The name mentioned there was slightly different, but as the Council for Quality of Healthcare is so young that the translation into English is still under deliberation. No need to repeat all of the information in the last newsletter, but hopefully a short recap will suffice: the Council was established by the Minister of Health in April 2009 and is assigned the task of co-ordinating, faciliting and stimulating guideline development and implementation in public health, cure and care. Focal points are safety, patient involvement, cost-effectiveness and medical technology.

The Council consists of seven members and is supported by a small bureau.

Except for several advisory reports, the Council has recently issued the Guideline for Guidelines. This document - drafted by an independent  group of guideline experts - states the minimal requirements for a guideline, e.g. patients should be involved, conflicts of interests need to be transparent and a systematic summary of evidence. At the moment the Council is planning to add a paragraph about cost-effectiveness to this Guideline for Guidelines. The Guideline for Guidelines has a follow-up in the HARING-project - headed by Jako Burgers - in which a manual and toolbox for guideline development and implementation is being developed. If all goes well this manual and toolbox will be presented at the 2012 G-I-N Conference.

Furthermore a Top 100 of (health)care subjects has been constructed on the basis of several criteria. This Top 100 is a concept list for further discussion on how to co-ordinate guideline development in the Netherlands. This means that when for example the GPs want to update their diabetes guideline, other health professionals update their diabetes guidelines at the same time. But there is more, when updating a guideline, other quality instruments which are related to or derived from the guidelines should - when necessary - also be updated. Before this coherence is possible and achieved the concept top 100 needs to be validated by the stake-holders concerned. This validation will take place the coming year.

Both the Guideline for Guidelines and the Top 100 are not available in English, but translation is being considered as they could possibly be of use to others.

When developing guidelines and guideline methodology, it is good to know that others worldwide are working on this as well, and this offers great opportunities. So tapping into the Guideline International Network is a privilege; we hope to learn a lot and we also hope to contribute as well.

To find out more about us you can go to:


Mail address: PO Box 93245, 2509 The Hague, The Netherlands


Page last updated: Jul 07, 2010
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