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Found 70 results
  1. Content Article
    In my 15 years focusing on developing drink thickening solutions for dysphagia patients, the intersection of dysphagia management and patient safety has become increasingly apparent. Dysphagia, or difficulty swallowing, presents not only as a significant health challenge but also as a critical patient safety issue. The condition's underdiagnosis, particularly in vulnerable populations, heightens the risk of severe complications, including choking, aspiration pneumonia, dehydration and the profound fear of choking that can lead to malnutrition.
  2. Content Article
    Throughout this series of Fundamental Care podcasts, a panel of key opinion leaders and passionate healthcare staff from the UK will discuss and debate evidence based best practices at the core of the day-to-day challenges faced in healthcare, not only for patients but also for healthcare workers themselves.
  3. Content Article
    Increasing numbers of people are at risk of developing frailty. People living with frailty are experiencing unwarranted variationin their care. This toolkit will provide you with expert practical advice and guidance on how to commission and provide the best system wide care for people living with frailty.
  4. Content Article
    A key piece of guidance aiming to support hospital teams in their work to improve care of older people living with frailty is now available, in a collaboration between Getting It Right First Time (GIRFT) and the British Geriatrics Society (BGS). The guidance is designed to accompany the new GIRFT Hospital Acute Care Frailty Pathway, and offers detailed measures teams should take to improve care and reduce hospital-acquired dependency for those living with frailty, as well as stressing that interventions should be monitored and linked more widely to community-based services.
  5. Content Article
    The Joint Commission's National Patient Safety Goals address patient care and safety to give healthcare organisations a framework for improvement. This article from the University of Southern California takes a look at the current National Patient Safety Goals, the role of healthcare administration in patient safety, strategies to implement safety goals in hospitals and evaluating the effectiveness of safety goals.
  6. News Article
    Patients at trusts with long waiting lists should no longer think ‘they have to go to their local hospital’ for outpatient appointments, but should instead be offered virtual consultations elsewhere in the country where there is greater capacity, Sir Jim Mackey has told HSJ. The NHS England elective chief said recent efforts to abolish two-year waiters by July had meant a “very big” surgical focus. However, the next phase of the elective recovery plan would see a major shift of emphasis onto reducing the wait for outpatient appointments. Sir Jim said: “Providers have been split into tiers again with tier one having national oversight and tier two, regional oversight. Behind that we will be pairing up organisations so that organisations with capacity can help those with the biggest challenges from a virtual outpatient perspective. He added: “There still is a lot to work through [on virtual outpatients], we’re going to be testing the concept… We need to work through how all the wiring and plumbing needs to work. For example, what happens if the patient needs a diagnostic locally, having seen a clinician virtually in another part of the country? “It would be great also to try and stimulate more of a consumer drive on this – encouraging patients to ask about virtual outpatients when the waits locally may be too long, so they don’t just think they have to go to their local hospital. I think this could really help shift the model if we can get it right.” Read full story (paywalled) Source: HSJ, 9 August 2022
  7. News Article
    A training programme is providing people with the skills to care for loved ones suffering from serious conditions at home in their final days. Sarah Bow's partner Gary White, from Somerset, was 55 when he was diagnosed with motor neurone disease in 2021. A team from NHS Somerset provided personalised training to Ms Bow which allowed the couple to spend the final 13 months of his life together at home. The Somerset NHS Foundation Trust social care training team made visits to the couple's home as Mr White's condition progressed, to provide advice and guidance to Ms Bow. The service was set up in November 2021 to provide free NHS standardised training and competency assessments in clinical skills to people involved in social care. Ms Bow said the scheme had helped them spend more time together doing the things Mr White enjoyed. "Being able to care for him meant we could have so many precious moments before he died," she said. The training in a variety of skills including like catheters and injections, aims to reduce hospital admissions and improve patient discharge times. Read full story Source: BBC News, 17 February 2023
  8. News Article
    NHS England has shelved priorities on Long Covid and diversity and inclusion – as well as a wide range of other areas – in its latest slimmed down operational planning guidance, HSJ analysis shows. NHSE published its planning guidance for 2023-24, which sets the national “must do” asks of trust and integrated care systems, shortly before Christmas. HSJ has analysed objectives, targets and asks from the 2022-23 planning guidance which do not appear in the 2023-24 document. The measures on which trusts and systems will no longer be held accountable for include improving the service’s black, Asian and minority ethnic disparity ratio by “delivering the six high-impact actions to overhaul recruitment and promotion practices”. Another omission from the 2023-24 guidance compared to 2022-23 is a target to increase the number of patients referred to post-Covid services, who are then seen within six weeks of their referral. Several requirements on staff have been removed, including to ”continue to support the health and wellbeing of our staff, including through effective health and wellbeing conversations” and ”continued funding of mental health hubs to enable staff access to enhanced occupational health and wellbeing and psychological support”. Read full story (paywalled) Source: HSJ, 4 January 2022
  9. Content Article
    NHS England has published its planning guidance for 2023/2023. The 2023/24 priorities and operational planning guidance reconfirms the ongoing need to recover our core services and improve productivity, making progress in delivering the key NHS Long Term Plan ambitions and continuing to transform the NHS for the future.
  10. Content Article
    Weaknesses resulting from a patchwork of patient safety processes developed by individual healthcare organisations over the past quarter-century, exposed by the Covid-19 pandemic, can be remedied through both local systems design support and widespread best practices uniformity.
  11. Content Article
    In the face of record high waiting times for elective care, The King's Fund undertook research to understand the strategies that have been used to reduce waiting times in England and elsewhere in the past 20 years. Elective care waiting lists and waiting times are a product of the fluctuations in and disparities between the demand for and available supply of healthcare. Understanding the root causes of these disparities and taking corrective action to restore balance between demand and supply and optimising the conditions within the health care system is therefore considered key to any strategy to reduce waiting times and sustain them at that level.
  12. News Article
    Many people who are medically ready to leave hospital are not able to go home because of pressures in social care. Health and social care teams across Scotland are working to create more room in hospitals as we go into winter when it traditionally gets busier. In Lothian, they are using care homes as an interim measure to help rehabilitate people before they can go back home. Nineteen rooms at the Elsie Inglis Nursing Home in Edinburgh are being used in an effort to help people get out of hospital. Archie McQuater, who spent seven months in The Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh after one of his big toes was removed because of an infection, has finally got out of hospital and is now staying at the Elsie Inglis. The 94-year-old has been in the care home for two months and is trying to improve his mobility so that he can return home. Archie is among 200 people in Edinburgh who have been moved from a hospital to a care home between November 2021 and September 2022. NHS Lothian estimates it has saved about 13,000 bed days in hospitals during that time. Read full story Source: BBC News, 2 November 2022
  13. News Article
    The “social prescribing” of gardening, singing and art classes is a waste of NHS money, a study suggests. Experts found that sending patients to community activity groups had “little to no impact” on improving health or reducing demand on GP services. The research calls into question a major drive from the NHS and Department of Health to increase social prescribing as a solution to the shortage of doctors and medical staff. In 2019 the NHS set a target of referring 900,000 patients for such activities via their GP surgeries within five years. Projects receiving government funding include football to support mental health, art for dementia, community gardening and singing classes to help patients to recover from Covid. However, the study, published in the journal BMJ Open, said there was “scant evidence” to support the mass rollout of so-called “social prescribing link workers”. Read full story (paywalled) Source: The Times, 18 October 2022
  14. News Article
    NHS England has this week told trusts it is abandoning a patient safety target ‘until maternity services in England can demonstrate sufficient staffing levels’ to meet it. The Midwifery Continuity of Care model was designed to ensure expectant mothers would be cared for by the same small team of midwives throughout their pregnancy, labour and postnatal care. It was a key recommendation of 2016’s Better Births review of English midwifery services. NHSE’s chief midwifery officer for England Jacqueline Dunkley-Bent championed the policy and guidance on its implementation was issued in October. However, in her report on the care failures at Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital Trust’s maternity department, Donna Ockenden said the Midwifery Continuity of Care model should be suspended until more evidence was gathered about its effectiveness and there were enough midwives to meet minimum staffing requirements. Ms Ockenden said patient safety had been “compromised by the unprecedented pressures that Continuity of Care models of care place on maternity services already under significant strain”. Read full story (paywalled) Source: HSJ, 23 September 2022
  15. Content Article
    Each year, the Joint Commission gathers information about emerging patient safety issues from stakeholders and experts in different fields of healthcare. This information forms the basis of the Commission's National Patient Safety Goals, which are tailored to specific programs.
  16. News Article
    The government said it will set up ‘dedicated team’ to look for innovative ways for the NHS to continue treating people for coronavirus, while also providing care for non-covid health issues. In its pandemic recovery strategy published today, the government also said step-down and community care will be “bolstered” to support earlier discharge from acute hospitals. The 60-page document contained little new information about plans for NHS services, but said: “The government will seek innovative operating models for the UK’s health and care settings, to strengthen them for the long term and make them safer for patients and staff in a world where COVID-19 continues to be a risk. “For example, this might include using more telemedicine and remote monitoring to give patients hospital-level care from the comfort and safety of their own homes. Capacity in community care and step-down services will also be bolstered, to help ensure patients can be discharged from acute hospitals at the right time for them". To this end, the government will establish a dedicated team to see how the NHS and health infrastructure can be supported for the COVID-19 recovery process and thereafter. Read full story Source: 12 May 2020
  17. News Article
    Although community-based treatment can improve outcomes for people with eating disorders, it must not be at the expense of vital inpatient services, says Lorna Collins in an article today in the Guardian supporting Eating Disorders Awareness Week. No single treatment or approach works for every patient experiencing an eating disorder and it is extremely hard to get help; there is too little money in the system to provide enough care. "Speaking to patients, carers and clinicians, I am struck by the sheer desperation of so many people saying the system has failed them. Too many find that nothing is done until they are at death’s door. Others say no one talks about binge-eating disorder, which is still too often seen as a weakness or a problem that dieting can fix, rather than a real eating disorder," says Lorna. Clinicians, too, paint a gloomy picture of the state of services. Oxford-based eating disorder consultant Agnes Ayton, who chairs the faculty of eating disorders at the Royal College of Psychiatrists, is frank about the problems. She believes NHS eating disorder services are on their knees and desperately need more money after years of austerity. However, there are some encouraging signs. In West Yorkshire and Harrogate, consultant psychiatrist William Rhys Jones, who works for the Connect community and inpatient eating disorders service, says he is seeing real change. Connect’s community outreach teams deliver home-based treatment for people with severe and enduring eating disorders. This is one of the NHSE new care models and Jones says results so far have been very positive. Clinical community services and early intervention result in a good prognosis, he says – and it is cost effective. While inpatient treatment costs about £434 a day, community treatment costs about £20 to £35 a day, with similar or even improved clinical outcomes. While there are concerns about limiting inpatient treatment and prioritising community treatment simply because it may be cheaper, positive examples like this can help hold the NHS to its promise to make treatment truly open to all who need it. Read full story Source: The Guardian, 2 March 2020
  18. News Article
    Children’s cancer services in south London are to be reconfigured after a new review confirmed they represented an “inherent geographical risk to patient safety” — following HSJ revelations last year of how serious concerns had been “buried” by senior leaders. Sir Mike Richards’ independent review was commissioned after HSJ revealed a 2015 report linking fragmented London services to poor quality care had not been addressed, and clinicians were facing pressure to soften recommendations which would have required them to change. The review, published in conjunction with Thursday’s NHS England board meeting, recommended services at two sites should be redesigned as soon as possible to improve patient experience. Read full story (paywalled) Source: HSJ, 31 January 2020
  19. Content Article
    The first wave of the pandemic necessitated a large scale shift to greater digital engagement with patients, yet progress has not been uniform. While virtual consultations have become increasingly commonplace, communication outside of those appointments is still often analogue and generally sporadic. Cancelling an appointment – or indicating in advance that a specific day or time doesn’t work – remains a complicated, non-digital experience for many patients. With millions now on waiting lists for treatment, and a significant minority having already waited two years, this sort of communication gap becomes more challenging. As such there are arguments that it’s now time for the digital acceleration seen during the pandemic to extend to this area too.
  20. Content Article
    Continuity, usually considered a quality aspect of primary care, is under pressure in Norway, and elsewhere. An association lasting more than 15 years between a patient and a specific GP reduces the probability of any of these factors by 25-30%, a study by Sandvik et al. found. The researchers said 'promoting stability among GPs' should be a priority for health authorities, and warned that continuity of care was under pressure.
  21. Content Article
    Regina Hoffman, executive director of Pennsylvania’s Patient Safety Authority, explains why we sometimes need to look beyond the accepted 'best practice' and provide the best care instead.  
  22. Content Article
    This guide will support healthcare professionals to integrate prehabilitation services into the cancer pathway.
  23. Community Post
    "There is an aspect of information exchange that has attracted less attention and fewer resources: that patients are experts in their experience and know much more than clinicians about their own health and the needs and goals important to them." From: https://catalyst.nejm.org/information-asymmetry-untapped-patient/ Such an important point to see patients as knowledge hubs on their own care experiences.
  24. Community Post
    Call 4 Concern is an initiative started by Critical Care Outreach Nurse Consultant, Mandy Odell. Relatives/carers know our patients best - they notice the subtle signs of deterioration in their loved one. Families and carers are now able to refer straight to the Critical care outreach team directly if they feel that care has not been escalated. Want to set up a call for concern initiative in your Trust? Need some support? Are you a relative that would like it in your Trust? Leave comments below -
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