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

Anitha Uddin

In April, I was fortunate to attend the International Forum on Quality and Safety in Healthcare in Paris. It was an eye-opening experience that taught me so much.

A particular idea I took away was that quality improvement should not be considered an extra-curricular activity; it should be embedded into current practice. And since student nurses are the ones who will be working in healthcare in the coming years, it needs to remain the bedrock of our education.

That’s why I found the nursing discussion session so inspirational. I met nurses from around the globe who all shared a similar vision about healthcare and quality improvement, and we discussed everything from policy and education, to current nursing practices and quality improvement. 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 »

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 »

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 »

Jan 292014
 
Mike Davidge

Mike Davidge

It’s very difficult to empty a bath without pulling out the plug, especially if the taps are still on.

That’s a useful analogy to bear in mind when we are thinking about the pressures on A&E departments, particularly as we head into winter with the dreaded ‘winter pressures’.

But would you be surprised to know that demand for A&E services doesn’t vary much with seasons and certainly doesn’t spike in the winter? So, where do all those delays come from? Continue reading »

Jan 312013
 
Jan Davies

Jan Davies

I recently heard nurse lecturer Austin Thomas speak about his experience of 30 operations after barely surviving a near-fatal road accident. His verdict was that many people working in the NHS say that the patient is the most important person. But when you are a patient it doesn’t feel that way.

How can we change the way we deliver services to ensure they genuinely meet the needs of the people who use them? Listening to patients is one way that seems so obvious, but we don’t always have a good track record of doing this. Maybe it’s the fear of only hearing one point of view, which may not be enough to build a service on – but hearing one voice has to better than hearing none at all. Continue reading »