Measuring progress in clinical governance: assessing the reliability and validity of the Clinical Governance Climate Questionnaire (CGCQ)

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Colleges, School and Institutes


Despite a lack of conceptual clarity, the importance of cultural change to clinical governance is widely accepted. While generic measures of organizational performance, culture and climate are available, their relationship to clinical governance is unclear. Consequently, there is currently no valid and reliable measure of clinical governance climate. This study aimed to address the deficiency by reducing a pool of clinical governance climate indicators developed via previous qualitative research, describing a latent factor structure and assessing the internal consistency and external validity of the factor model. The resultant instrument, the Clinical Governance Climate Questionnaire (CGCQ), attained high internal consistency and external (discriminant and construct) validity in a study population of healthcare Trust staff. It consists of 60 items distributed across six sub-scales of clinical governance: planned and integrated quality improvement; proactive risk management; absence of unjust blame and punishment; working with colleagues; training and development; and organizational learning. The measure enables those charged with leading the clinical governance agenda in UK healthcare organizations to assess the progress of organizational development initiatives, highlighting areas requiring particular attention. They might also be of interest to those concerned about the negative unintended consequences of performance management.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)234-250
Number of pages17
JournalHealth Services Management Research
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2003