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  • Patient letter: improving care by using patient feedback (December 2019)

    • UK
    • Accounts and narratives
    • Pre-existing
    • Public domain
    • No
    • National Institute for Health Research
    • 01/12/19
    • Everyone

    Summary

    The report, Improving care by using patient feedback, published by the National Institute for Health Research, features nine new research studies about using patient experience data in the NHS. These show what organisations are doing now and what could be done better. 

    Here, we highlight one of the examples from the report, showing some correspondence between a patient and a nursing team.

    Content

    Vanessa Sweeney, Deputy Chief Nurse and Head of Nursing – Surgery and Cancer Board at University College London Hospitals NHS FT decided to share a example of positive feedback from a patient with staff. The impact on the staff was immediate and Vanessa decided to share their reaction with the patient who provided the feedback.

    The letter she sent, and the patient’s response are reproduced here:

    Dear XXXXX,

    Thank you for your kind and thoughtful letter, it has been shared widely with the teams and the named individuals and has had such a positive impact.

    I’m the head of nursing for the Surgery and Cancer Board and the wards and departments where you received care. I’m also one of the four deputy chief nurses for UCLH and one of my responsibilities is to lead the trust-wide Sisters Forum. It is attended by more than 40 senior nurses and midwives every month who lead wards and departments across our various sites. Last week I took your letter to this forum and shared it with the sisters and charge nurses. I removed your name but kept the details about the staff. I read your letter verbatim and then gave the sisters and charge nurses the opportunity in groups to discuss in more detail. I asked them to think about the words you used, the impact of care, their reflections and how it will influence their practice. Your letter had a very powerful impact on us as a group and really made us think about how we pay attention to compliments but especially the detail of your experience and what really matters. I should also share that this large room of ward sisters were so moved by your kindness, compassion and thoughtfulness for others.

    We are now making this a regular feature of our Trust Sisters Forum and will be introducing this to the Matrons Forum – sharing a compliment letter and paying attention to the narrative, what matters most to a person.

    Thank you again for taking the time to write this letter and by doing so, having such a wide lasting impact on the teams, individuals and now senior nurses from across UCLH. We have taken a lot from it and will have a lasting impact on the care we give.

    The patient replied:

    Thank you so much for your email and feedback. As a family we were truly moved on hearing what impact the compliment has had. My son said – “really uplifting”. I would just like to add that if you ever need any input from a user of your services please do not hesitate to contact me again

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