Jun 072013
Mike Spencer

Mike Spencer

As we launch The Listening Organisation, the latest white paper from 1000 Lives Plus, our hope is that it will help NHS Wales organisations explore ways to listen to patients and the public and use what they hear to help create the best services possible. But this will mean approaching how we ‘listen’ in a new way.

My eldest daughter is currently undertaking a PGCE in Modern Foreign Languages (MFL). As someone who has always struggled to make sense of anything other than Yorkshire English, I marvel at anyone who can speak four languages and is passionate enough to want to teach others! But what really interests me are the parallels between some of the perceived good practice used to help MFL learners and what we have included in the white paper. Continue reading »

Apr 122013
Prof Ceri Phillips

Ceri Phillips

The NHS in Wales is currently facing unprecedented pressures in meeting demands on its services from patients and in meeting demands on its financial management by Welsh Government targets on health boards to break even on their annual budgets.

These financial pressures are exacerbated by the progressive underfunding gap for NHS Wales relative to other nations within the UK and having very little wriggle room to affect costs, which represent significant levels of expenditure, and are set at UK level. Continue reading »

Mar 182013
Mike Spencer

Mike Spencer

My colleague Michelle Graham recently blogged about how patient input has been crucial in the Life after Stroke programme. There is growing recognition that patients should be the most important people in our healthcare systems – and as organisations we should be trying to listen to patients as much as possible.

But how easy will it be to become a listening organisation?   Continue reading »

Feb 012013
Post by Dr Alan Willson

Dr Alan Willson

If I knew my car wasn’t going to start one morning each week, I’d consider scrapping it and buying a new one. Yet in healthcare we accept a 20% failure rate (80% reliability) as ‘good’. One day in five we may as well not turn up!

Is that good enough? For our patients, our colleagues or our organisations? Failure costs time, money and the goodwill of the people using our services. Achieving high reliability is not just about being efficient or effective – it is about providing care we can be proud of. 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 »

Jan 302013
Dr Alan Willson

Dr Alan Willson

Looking back over 2012, one of the highlights of my year was meeting an astronaut, Dr Dafydd Williams.

Known as Dave rather than Dafydd in his native Canada, he was delighted to visit the land of his Welsh ancestors to talk about the similarities between healthcare and spaceflight at a special event organised by 1000 Lives Plus. The event expanded concepts explored by Dave in ‘Achieving Peak Performance’, a white paper published with the support of the Health Foundation. Continue reading »