Small differences can lead to big changes which can escalate if carried out by many people on numerous occasions. Big changes in how autistic people with a learning disability access and experience healthcare can and should be informed by stakeholders, including the patient and their family.
Blair et al identified the following simple steps:
Take time to be with the person and their families to understand their lived experiences.
Pick up not only on what is said, but also what is not said, and avoid hurrying the interaction.
It is essential to remember that every interaction counts and each contact matters. Health professionals only spend a fraction of time with a person, so it is vital to gain as much insight as possible from the person and those who know them best, and to consider all that is being relayed, verbally and non-verbally. In doing so, healthcare practitioners can refocus how they interpret what they see and develop their understanding that what is seen superficially is not all that there is.
What will I learn?
The report identifies 10 lessons to support providers and commissioners seeking to adopt this new approach:
Start by focusing on a specific population.
Involve primary care from the start.
Go where the energy is.
Spend time developing shared understanding of challenges.
Work through and thoroughly test assumptions about how activities will achieve results.
Find ways to learn from others and assess suitability of interventions.
Set up an ‘engine room’ for change.
Distribute decision-making roles.
Invest in workforce development at all levels.
Test, evaluate and adapt for continuous improvement.
What can I learn?
Practical guidance and examples of best practice in the design of infusion devices
How design can be used to change and make safer the use of infusion devices in practice.
Principles that can be widely applied to the design of other technologies
This resource is a key output from an NIHR-funded research project called INQUIRE: improving NHS quality using internet ratings and experiences. It turns the research findings and key lessons into a practical output. It is designed to help healthcare staff interpret and respond appropriately to online feedback and use it to improve healthcare delivery.