Diabetes Quality Programme - Peer review

As part of the Quality Assurance stream of the programme, all participating Paediatric Diabetes Units received a peer review. A multidisciplinary team of peers spoke with the service team, relevant colleagues, patients and families to determine compliance against the standards and to identify areas of good practice for sharing more widely and recommendations to improve outcomes.

On this page we explain the process and give tips for services that were visited and for peer reviewers who undertook visits to other services.

This programme ran for five years until March 2023.

Our Impact report 2022 highlights the impact this programme had on paediatric diabetes units across England and Wales from 2018 to early 2023. Our Self-assessment report 2018-2022 evaluates the units' compliance against more than 150 measures.

What is peer review?

The peer review workstream built on the Department of Health’s Diabetes Quality Improvement Network System. It was the process by which professionals - including a paediatric consultant, paediatric diabetes specialist nurse, dietitian, and psychologist, and supported by members of the RCPCH Diabetes Quality Programme staff team, examined the paediatric diabetes units’ processes, team working, governance, outcomes and engagement with patients and families.

The approach was developmental. We encouraged teams to share their challenges so that barriers could be explored and to highight hteir achievements so that good practice could be disseminated.

The benefits of peer review were mutual, with reviewers and those being reviewed challenged and encouraged to learn from colleagues, share good practice examples and develop their own practice and team.

It was a valuable and insightful process, and certainly a welcome one in terms of helping our team think about the way we function and what can or should be improved.

One of our peer reviewers

For teams who received a peer review

Our short video explained how to prepare for the peer review, including the schedule and representation, the documentation required and presentation content.

Documentation to upload befor the review

  • Three key documents: Operational Policy, Annual Report and Workplan - standard templates can be downloaded below
  • Additional information to evidence compliance with the NDQP self-assessment measures. A suggested list of documentation can be downloaded below.

Schedule - Download draft schedule - the order is a suggestion and not mandated. To get the most from the day we recommend:

  • It is preferable to meet with the MDT before senior managerial representatives
  • Consider parent / carer representation. This session should be followed by lunch / a break
  • Timings and breaks can be adjusted as detailed. Please seek advice from the RCPCH staff team.

Video presentation - Use this time to showcase your service and explain the context within which you work. A comprehensive picture here would help focus individual discussions.

Network Manager - Seek support from your Network Manager. They can help you prepare and support you on the day.

Others' experiences - Our video collection shares perspectives from a service that received their review.

Helpful and encouraging. The peer review panel acknowledged our team's hard work. They also provided insights into areas we could develop and gave recommendations.

Participating unit

If you have any questions about the peer review process or the scheduling of your visit, please contact diabetes.quality@rcpch.ac.uk.

For peer reviewers

First, thank you to everyone who volunteers to join a peer review team. We appreciate how busy you are and are grateful for the time and expertise you give to enable the peer reviews to be as constructive and effective as possible.

Information for reviewers

  • We'll email you a list of upcoming reviews. Please respond with your availability and preferences.
  • We'll review all responses and allocate a review team in a way that seeks to meets a number of criteria such as balance of experience, familiarity with service context (ie DGH, tertiary) and regional considerations. 
  • We aim to give as many people as possible the opportunity to gain experience as a peer reviewer so it may not be possible to give you your preferred option, but we will do our best.
  • As a reviewer, you won't be expected to review teams within your own network. 
  • If your contact details change or you are unavailable for a period, please let us know.

Tips for reviewers

  • Share a short biography with us - this helps both the peer review team and service being reviewed.
  • Keep in contact with your peer review manager - they will be able to answer any queries and support you through the review.
  • Ensure you can access the evidence on SharePoint as soon as possible. Familiarise yourself with the review documentation and consider questions and themes for exploration with the peer review team.
  • Support your peer review colleagues - share the time, ensure all themes are explored and challenge appropriately.
  • Please share your feedback with us - we are keen to improve the process and how we support services and peer reviewers.
  • Maintain our supportive, non-judgemental approach: use the resources provided to develop questions which will get the most out of the day.

Training and experience materials for reviewers

Alongside our video collections below, we have added a reflection piece from one of our first time reviewers on her experience as a peer reviewer for the diabetes quality programme - we hope these materials provide some insight into the peer review process and are useful.

Training videos:


Experience videos