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Found 30 results
  1. Content Article
    Elizabeth Dixon was a child with special health needs. She had been born prematurely at Frimley Park Hospital on 14 December 2000. Following treatment and care at Great Ormond Street Hospital and a children’s hospice she was nursed at home under a care package. As a result of a failure to clear a tracheostomy tube she asphyxiated and was pronounced dead at Frimley Park hospital on 4 December 2001. The investigation chaired by Dr Bill Kirkup looked at the events surrounding the care of Elizabeth and makes a series of recommendations in respect of the failures in the care she received from the NHS. Recommendations Hypertension (high blood pressure) in infants is a problem that is under-recognised and inconsistently managed, leading to significant complications. Its profile should be raised with clinicians; there should be a single standard set of charts showing the acceptable range at different ages and gestations; and a single protocol to reduce blood pressure safely. Blood pressure should be incorporated into a single early warning score to alert clinicians to deterioration in children in hospital. Community care for patients with complex conditions or conditions requiring complex care must be properly planned, taking into account and specifying safety, effectiveness and patient experience. The presence of mental or physical disability must not be used to justify or excuse different standards of care. Commissioning of NHS services from private providers should not take for granted the existence of the same systems of clinical governance as are mandated for NHS providers. These must be specified explicitly. Communication between clinicians, particularly when care is handed over from one team or unit to another, must be clear, include all relevant facts and use unambiguous terms. Terms such as palliative care and terminal care may be misleading and should be avoided or clarified. Training in clinical error, reactions to error and responding with honesty, investigation and learning should become part of the core curriculum for clinicians. Although it is true that curricula are already crowded with essential technical and scientific knowledge, it cannot be the case that no room can be found for training in the third leading cause of death in western health systems. Clinical error, openly disclosed, investigated and learned from, must not be subject to blame. Conversely, there should be zero tolerance of cover up, deception and fabrication in any health care setting, not least in the aftermath of error. There should be a clear mechanism to hold individuals to account for giving false information or concealing information relating to public services, and for failing to assist investigations. The Public Authority (Accountability) Bill drawn up in the aftermath of the Hillsborough Independent Panel and Inquests sets out a commendable framework to put this in legislation. It should be re-examined. The existing haphazard system of generating clinical expert witnesses is not fit for purpose. It should be reviewed, taking onto account the clear need for transparent, formalised systems and clinical governance. Professional regulatory and criminal justice systems should contain an inbuilt ‘stop’ mechanism to be activated when an investigation reveals evidence of systematic or organisational failures and which will trigger an appropriate investigation into those wider systemic failures. Scrutiny of deaths should be robust enough to pick up instances of untoward death being passed off as expected. Despite changes to systems for child and adult deaths, concern remains that without independent review such cases may continue to occur. The introduction of medical examiners should be reviewed with a view to making them properly independent. Local health service complaints systems are currently subject to change as part of wider reform of public sector complaints. Implementation of a better system of responding to complaints must be done in such a way as to ensure the integration of complaints into NHS clinical governance as a valuable source of information on safety, effectiveness and patient experience. The approaches available to patients and families who have not been treated with openness and transparency are multiple and complex, and it is easy to embark inadvertently on a path that is ill-suited to deliver the answers that are being sought. There should be clear signposting to help families and the many organisations concerned. Ministerial Statement Anne and Graeme Dixon reaction to Dr Bill Kirkup’s report Patient Safety Learning's statement on the Dixon Inquiry report
  2. Content Article
    Problems related to the care home and the company were known well before the Panorama expose in 2016. When the Panorama programme was aired it resulted in immediate closure of one home and all the homes which were operated by Morleigh being transferred to new operators. The Review includes reports of abuse against residents; residents being left to lie in wet urine-soaked bedsheets; concerns from relatives about their loved ones being neglected; reports of there being insufficient food for residents, no hot water and no heating; claims that dozens of residents were sharing one bathroom. Here's a summary of the report's findings: More than 100 residents had concerns raised more than once. More than 200 safeguarding alerts were made for individuals but only 16 went through to an individual adult safeguarding conference. More than 80 whistleblower or similar reports were made concerning issues that put residents at risk. 44 inspections were undertaken at Morleigh Group homes in the three-year period, the vast majority identifying breaches. There was a period of at least 12 months when four of the homes had no registered manager in place. During the three-year period reviewed the police received 130 reports relating to the care homes. A spokesperson for Cornwall Council said: “We have different procedures and policies in place and have invested time, money and staffing into making sure that we can respond better when concerns are raised.'' “One of the problems was that all the partners had their own policies and procedures but they weren’t integrated. That is probably one of the key issues that we have now addressed.” “The assessment is so different now and the organisations are working much more closely that it reduces the risk dramatically.'' This is an important and long-awaited review. This situation echoes other care home scandals across the UK. I urge everyone to read the full report and reflect on the real root causes of the problem, which I believe go well beyond failings in inter-agency policies and communication. What would your action plan be? How would you monitor it?
  3. News Article
    The NHS has been returned to the highest level of risk on its emergency preparedness framework, a move which allows national leaders tighter control over local resources and decision making. NHS England chief executive Sir Simon Stevens announced the decision at a press conference this morning. He said: “Unfortunately, again we are facing a serious situation [due to rising coronavirus infections and hospital admissions]. That is the reason why at midnight tonight the health service in England will be returning to its highest level of emergency preparedness, EPPR level 4, which of course we had to be at from the end of January to the end of July.” Placing the NHS on level 4 of Emergency Preparedness Reslience and Response framework allows system leaders to take control of decisions over mutual aid and other local priorities. Sir Simon was joined by NHSE/I medical director Steve Powis and Alison Pittard, dean of the Faculty of Intensive Care Medicine. They used the press conference to stress the threat the NHS faced from the second covid peak, but also set out more positive news on the covid vaccine programme. Read full story Source: HSJ, 4 November 2020
  4. Event
    until
    This Royal Society of Medicine meeting will focus on some of the key medico-legal issues that impact GPs, primary care and patient safety, with a specific emphasis on inquests, clinical negligence and incidents. This comprehensive programme will review and explore the latest legal and regulatory developments from national leaders in each of these fields. Delegates will gain an understanding of: The role of coroners and inquests, what to expect and what GPs and those working in primary care need to do to prepare and actively learn from deaths. The role of Medical Examiners and how they will impact on primary care. The support, including education and training, available to GPs in dealing with medico-legal issues and how to access practical support (e.g. via the Medical Defence Organisations) when necessary. The role of NHS Resolution and the Clinical Negligence Scheme for GPs (CNSGP) and their impact upon GPs and patient safety. Developments in learning from incidents in primary care, including feedback from the CQC regarding best practice and areas for improvement. Book here
  5. Content Article
    I believe all clinicians should read this latest report. There is so much to be learned and so many changes in clinical practice that can be made right away. Since 2018, I have been teaching using Oliver's tragic story to promote reflection on best practice in prescribing and in implementing the Mental Capacity Act. I could write a lot here; however, I believe this is a report all clinicians, and especially all prescribers, need to read in full. A summary of how I see this (or indeed how any individual sees it) it will not be adequate.
  6. Content Article
    I have included this poignant video as a matter of public interest. This is an issue which goes beyond party politics. I use Robbie's story in all of my teaching on ethics and clinical governance.
  7. Content Article
    Key points Audit measures practice against performance. The audit cycle involves five stages: preparing for audit; selecting criteria; measuring performance level; making improvements; sustaining improvements. Choose audit topics based on high risk, high volume, or high cost problems, or on national clinical audits, national service frameworks, or guidelines from the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE). Derive standards from good quality guidelines. Use action plans to overcome the local barriers to change and identify those responsible for service improvement. Repeat the audit to find out whether improvements in care have been implemented after the first audit.
  8. Content Article
    In this book the authors set out two key areas for attention if audit is to play a part in bringing about real improvements in quality of care. First, efforts must be made to ensure that the NHS creates the local environment for audit. Second, the NHS needs to make sure that it uses audit methods that are most likely to lead to audit projects that result in real improvements.
  9. Content Article
    This document sets out the guiding principles that will allow NHS board members to understand the: Collective role of the board including effective governance in relation to the wider health and social care system. Activities and approaches that are most likely to improve board effectiveness in governing well. Contribution expected of them as individual board members.
  10. Content Article
    The free version of Hospify is available right now and is in daily use at over 150 clinical sites around the country including London North West University Healthcare Trust, County Durham and Darlington, University Hospitals North Midlands, Frimley Park and Lincolnshire Community NHS Trust. Hospify is also backed by Innovate UK, Wayra Velocity Health (in partnership with Telefonica and MSD Pharmaceutical), Kent Surrey Sussex AHSN and the UNISON and Managers in Partnership Unions. A premium version of Hospify specifically designed for healthcare teams is also now available. Called the Hospify Hub, it features an online admin portal for onboarding staff, a web app that syncs with users’ phones, broadcast messaging/paging with document attachments and a survey and data collection tool. Please email info@hospify.com for more details or visit hub.hospify.com to set up a Hub and give it a try for yourself.
  11. Content Article
    MEs are a key element of the death certification reforms, which, once in place, will deliver a more comprehensive system of assurances for all non-coronial deaths, regardless of whether the deceased is buried or cremated. MEs will be employed in the NHS system, ensuring lines of accountability are separate from NHS Acute Trusts but allowing for access to information in the sensitive and urgent timescales to register a death. This case study outlines the approach of South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust as one of the early adopter sites. To date, the following learning points have been identified and explored: End of Life Care, ceilings of care and avoidable admissions Some investigations have highlighted cases where the End of Life Care pathway could have either been established or fully implemented, where this would have been of benefit to patients and their families. Some patients may not have been cared for in the right location, and some admissions could have been avoided if the End of Life Care pathway had been suitably established and followed. Early detection and response to physiological deterioration, and effective communication Response stretched by implementation of National Early Warning Score (NEWS) but still learning around effective communication of escalation. The use of standardised communication tools is essential. Record keeping and organisation of medical records Some learning was identified in relation to the accuracy and completeness of medical records. It was evident that not all records are reflective of the clinical picture. Discussion with specialty teams is vital to support the investigation An independent review by the ME should be further supported by speciality ‘experts’, and if possible, peer review from other trusts can be sought to allow for full independent review. Seeking speciality opinion from those not directly involved with the case within STHFT has also been shown to be effective. Pathways for links to wider clinical governance processes have been strengthened.
  12. Content Article
    Both the 2019/20 CCG and PSS CQUIN schemes comprise indicators, aligned to four key areas, in support of the NHS Long Term Plan. Patient safety Mental health Prevention of ill health Best practice pathways This document sets out the: Overview of quality and safety indicators CCG Scheme Specialised Services Scheme Scheme Eligibility and Value Rules and Guidance - Agreeing and Implementing a CQUIN Scheme
  13. Content Article
    This guidance aims to help the NHS to create an environment to better support staff when things go wrong and to encourage learning from incidents. Key challenges include: fear equity and fairness bullying and harassment.
  14. Content Article
    NICE's role is to improve outcomes for people using the NHS and other public health and social care services. They do this by: Producing evidence-based guidance and advice for health, public health and social care practitioners. Developing quality standards and performance metrics for those providing and commissioning health, public health and social care services. Providing a range of information services for commissioners, practitioners and managers across the spectrum of health and social care. This website will link into all NICE Guidelines.
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