How best to provide feedback to healthcare providers and communicate with them to achieve changes in practice is an important part of a benchmarking cycle. The presumed benefit of an audit and feedback process to improve surgical practice is based on the belief that healthcare professionals are prompted to modify their practice when given performance feedback showing that their clinical practice is inconsistent with a desirable target (i.e., a benchmark).
Once a benchmark has been set for one or more outcomes in surgical practice, reducing the gap between current performance and the established benchmark is a complex process requiring a broad and rigorous perspective. We will perform a systematic search of the biomedical literature to review and map existing evidence on feedback and communication strategies related to benchmarking in surgical practice. Our aim is to outline the current evidence on delivering results of benchmarking to surgical healthcare professionals and summarise key findings on feedback and communication strategies within this context.