Jul 152014
 
GrantRobinson

Grant Robinson

Cwm Taf Health Board was a worthy winner of the Improving Patient Safety category at this year’s NHS Wales Awards for its project on patient flow.

By coordinating actions to make sure patients don’t wait unnecessarily for the care they need, health board staff have significantly reduced the time people spend waiting in ambulances and in the accident and emergency departments.

They’ve been able to demonstrate improved patient outcomes and experience, sometimes in areas they didn’t expect, and the changes have been sustained.

The Unscheduled Care Improvement Programme in Wales is designed to make it easy for people to get the right emergency and urgent care when it is needed, and to make sure that no-one has to wait unnecessarily for the care they need, or to go back to their home.

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Jul 012014
 

PeteStraw Image1A beautiful, sunny Llandudno greeted us on our arrival at the highly-anticipated 1000 Lives Improvement National Learning Event, a fantastic opportunity for healthcare practitioners and students to meet and discuss the notion of prudent healthcare and quality improvement within the NHS in Wales.

Welcome coffee and pastries lined the stomach for the launch session delivered by Professor Matthew Makin (Medical Director, BCUHB) and Dr Alan Wilson (Director, 1000 Lives Improvement), who introduced the concept of prudent healthcare – built on the three pillars of reducing avoidable harm, appropriately minimising intervention, and promoting co-production of health between service users and providers.

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May 152014
 
Liz Smith

Liz Smith

There was something different about this year’s Quality Forum and it took me a poster tour to work out what it was.

As an abstract reviewer, when that 5 pm deadline in November looms and my inbox becomes full, I am always inspired by the number and variety of proposals people submit. The way these abstracts are written is important; they need to make people say, “Tell me more”.

And that’s the same with the sights and sounds you are bombarded with from all the stands at the Forum. They need to grab your attention and draw you in. They need to make you want to hear more.

This year, I agreed to host a number of the poster tours. These involve moving between posters stands and giving a few minutes to each presenter to share the work they came to display and discuss, and to take any questions. There had been thousands of submissions from people who wanted to share their work on a poster at the forum, and only 700 had been accepted. Continue reading »

May 132014
 
Helen Price

Helen Price

While attending the International Forum for Quality and Safety in Healthcare in Paris last month, I felt so privileged to be given the opportunity to be part of a global community which has such passion and enthusiasm for making healthcare better.

In her keynote address, Maureen Bisognano, President and CEO of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, set the tone for the event. She described how healthcare is stuck in a gravitational pull of existing systems, and that to escape this requires new ideas, inspiration and collective impact. She said, “The power of an audacious goal accelerates change, bringing people together to make the impossible possible”. It was truly awe-inspiring.

One theme that was much talked about in many sessions was the importance of patient engagement. As Dr Morten Pytte from DNV-GL said, the call for patient-centred care, the 6 Cs, co-production and a collective approach to care has never been louder! It is clear that we need to bridge the gap between what we preach and what happens in practice. Continue reading »

May 092014
 
Andrew Cooper

Andrew Cooper

We recently launched the Ask about Clots campaign in Wales.

It aims to increase public awareness over the risk of developing a blood clot while in hospital. The health campaign’s simple message encourages individuals to ask about their personal risk so that they can be assessed and treated appropriately.

As we know, the major consideration for any campaign is what will actually engage people and motivate them to take the desired action?

In developing Ask about Clots, we focussed on three main areas which we believed were necessary to enable and encourage people to start asking! Continue reading »

May 022014
 
Mike Davidge

Mike Davidge

When Don Berwick features the Dalai Lama in a keynote presentation, you know something is going on.  When he compounds that by linking health to an 18th century British clockmaker and talks about being kind to one another and the benefits of charity giving, you might be forgiven for thinking he’d sort of lost the plot.

Well maybe except for two things.  Firstly, it was his delivery.  The keynote was delivered in his very understated style.  Those reassuring East Coast tones lend gravitas and are so reminiscent of Alastair Cooke – not the England cricket captain but the BBC’s long time US correspondent – and his Letters from America.  We trust this man not to lead us astray. Continue reading »

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 »

May 022014
 
Angela Williams

Angela Williams

During the recent International Forum on Quality and Safety in Healthcare, I facilitated a specialty poster focus group themed on record keeping. It was thought-provoking to hear different views on the latest ways to combat the everyday issues of ineffective record keeping.

Throughout the tour, the delegates heard a range of ideas, from the small and simple, to the more ambitious and innovative. The overarching message from each passionate presenter was the same, though; we need to make things work better for the benefit of the patient. What was clear is that this issue is still problematic, and not specific to one profession alone.

 Mike Davidge and me at the Quality Forum

Mike Davidge and me at the Quality Forum

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Apr 222014
 
Dr Simon Noble

Dr Simon Noble

62% of people in Wales believe that air travel is the main cause of blood clots, according to research we worked on for the Ask about Clots campaign. And it’s a damaging misconception – because there is a far greater risk of develop a clot when in hospital.

In fact, you are 1000 times more likely to develop a clot during or in the 90 days following hospital treatment. That’s why the misconception is a fatal one, because blood clots can cost lives.

Through my work with Lifeblood, we’ve tried to raise awareness that blood clots are the most common cause of preventable hospital deaths. And the more people know about clots, the more likely it is we’ll be able to prevent them.

Ask about Clots Infographic 3 Parts 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 »