May 022014
 
Tim Heywood

Tim Heywood

The main hall of the Palais des congrès in Paris is an enormous space. For fans of trivia, it was the venue for the Eurovision Song contest in 1978. The 3000 plus delegates at the Quality Forum may have been there for a very different reason, but there was something about the design of the building and the international mix of the delegates, that kept nostalgic thoughts of the 1970’s returning to my mind (Israel won Eurovision that year, if you are interested).

This was my second visit to the Forum – my first was 6 years ago, the year that the 1000 Lives Campaign was launched, and it struck me how even 2008 is starting to feel like a long time ago. Caught in the cycle of daily work it is easy to fall into the trap of thinking that nothing much changes about the issues we confront and the opportunities we have to change them. Having the opportunity to take a step back and take a different view of your own work context was a good reminder of how mistaken that is. Continue reading »

Apr 172014
 
Kate Carnegie

Kate Carnegie

What can we learn from patients telling their story? Taking the time to ask a simple question can make all the difference.

On the evening of March 17th, Cardiff’s Ask One Question Committee representatives came together to present our findings on the patient experience.

Ask One Question is a world-wide, student-led healthcare improvement initiative, encouraging students to ask their patients: “What can I do to improve your stay?” Continue reading »

Apr 072014
 
Ruth Hussey

Lloyd Evans

Clots. A word many have heard of, but I wonder how many understand the effect this five-letter word has on the health and wellbeing of our population.  The answer according to the Ask about Clots campaign launched last week: not enough!

As a final-year medical student approaching the start of a career within the NHS, I attended the launch of Ask about Clots with the realisation that in a little over four months, this topic would well and truly be hitting me square in the face.  Despite years of lectures, tutorials, and clinical attachments, I was taken aback by the facts: Continue reading »

Mar 032014
 
Dominique Bird

Dominique Bird

One year ago we launched Improving Quality Together, a training opportunity that gives staff ownership when it comes to quality improvement in NHS Wales.

A year on, 5752 NHS Wales Staff have completed the Bronze Level of the training, helping us all work towards a common language for quality improvement.

And why are we working towards an even higher staff uptake? Because a common language of quality improvement in NHS Wales benefits staff and patients alike. Continue reading »

Feb 202014
 
Paul Gimson

Paul Gimson

Imagine what a primary care service might look like if we gave the patients the money and asked them to design it themselves. This was the story I heard recently at a presentation given by the Southcentral Foundation, a citizen-owned health-service provider based in Anchorage, Alaska.

The presentation was at a recent event in Cardiff looking at Southcentral Foundation’s Nuka system of primary care. It’s ‘A customer-owner driven overhaul of a bureaucratic system centrally controlled, to one in which the local people are in control.’ It is the use of this term customer-owner which is one of the most striking features of the Nuka system.

The idea of a patient as a customer might feel wrong in the context of the NHS, but in this case the term represented a shift from a service designed around a medical model to one where the patient’s needs were put first. The provocative question for us is, if we considered patients as customers would that improve the experience of being a patient in NHS Wales? Continue reading »

Dec 172013
 
Dr Alan Willson

Dr Alan Willson

Every year I am inspired by the level and creativity of the work that is entered into the NHS Wales Awards.

The projects are diverse, covering many areas of healthcare and sometimes challenge the status quo and the accepted ways of doing things.

But all are driven by one aim; to improve the quality of patient care and experience.

Delivering quality improvement is vital to ensuring our NHS services are sustainable and meet the needs of patients. Continue reading »

Dec 162013
 
Mike Spencer

Mike Spencer

Here’s a challenge. How do we best make sure patients get person-centred care at a time when resources in the whole of the public sector are being stretched? Part of the answer lies in co-production, something that is currently being widely talked about in Wales.

 If a part of the healthcare system is outdated, cluttered, or simply not providing person-centred care, among the first to notice this will be patients. When we’re working within an already established system, it can sometimes be hard to see how things could be done differently.

Continue reading »

Nov 282013
 

Some thoughts from the All Party Parliamentary Group on Sepsis

Chris Hancock

Chris Hancock

To Westminster again. Although not, this time, by bike. And without Boris Johnson to meet us. Instead I was privileged to be representing the National Outreach Forum in Wales at the inaugural meeting of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Sepsis. Continue reading »

Oct 282013
 
Alison Strode

Alison Strode

Over 4,500 Allied Health Professionals (AHPs) work in NHS Wales and there are a significant number working in other public services in Wales, including social care and education and in the private and charitable sectors. AHPs are part of multi-disciplinary team across the country, and are increasingly involved at the interface between primary and secondary care.With the increased emphasis on a common language and consistent approach to improvement in NHS Wales, it is very important for all AHPs to understand how to lead or support quality improvement initiatives.

1000 Lives Plus has published a new version of its Quality Improvement Guide, specifically aimed at AHPs. It contains some examples of how the improvement methodology has been applied in physiotherapy and dietetics. Continue reading »

Aug 072013
 
Dr Alan Willson

Dr Alan Willson

Dr Don Berwick is a physician, a professor, a leader in patient safety, an inspiration. He is also a good friend of Wales, having been involved as long ago as 2006, helping to create ‘Designed to Deliver’, the Quality Improvement Plan (QUIP), which led to the 1000 Lives Campaign among other things. I have heard him speak several times in Wales on the need to put patient safety at the forefront of our thinking, to adopt quality improvement as the only way forward, and to believe that we can build a better health service for all. Continue reading »