Improving quality and safety in healthcare

NHS Improvement has published a shared learning resource on Improving quality and safety in healthcare. 

This resource contains case studies from providers that have been rated ‘good’ for safety by the Care Quality Commission.  They offer practical guidance to developing and spreading good practice on the following:

Read more at NHS Improvement

Delivering care under pressure

NHS reality check: Delivering care under pressure | Royal College of Physicians | OnMedica

Around three quarters of doctors (74%) say they are worried about the ability of their service to deliver safe patient care in the next 12 months due to pressures on the NHS, according to a survey carried out by the Royal College of Physicians (RCP).

The RCP launched a report today at its annual conference in which it detailed various concerns raised by the 2,101 doctors who responded to its survey.

The survey asked doctors about their experiences of delivering healthcare and their confidence in being able to raise concerns about patient care.

Focusing on their experiences of care over the past 12 months, 78% of doctors said demand for their service was rising and more than half (55%) of physicians believed patient safety had deteriorated.

More than a third (37%) said the quality of care had fallen while the majority (84%) had experienced staffing shortages in their team, while 82% believed the workforce was demoralised.

Read more on this at OnMedica

Full report: NHS reality check: Delivering care under pressure

New report from the national guardian for freedom to speak up

Dr Henrietta Hughes, national guardian for speaking up freely and safely in the NHS has published a new report, which outlines the progress made since her appointment in October 2016 | NHS Employers

national-guardian

Image source: CQC

Over the last 100 days, Dr Hughes has set up the national office and established a national network of Freedom to Speak Up guardians. Key points include:

  • 201 NHS trusts now have an FTSU guardian in place
  • twelve trusts are in the process of making an appointment of an FTSU guardian
  • 21 trusts have yet to appoint to the role
  • online resources and training available for guardians (including eight training sessions being led by the National Guardian’s Office (NGO)
  • guardians are encouraged to join regional networks to share progress and provide neighbouring support
  • the NGO plans to issue good practice guidance.
Read the full report here

Pressure on NHS beds could risk patient safety

Pressure on beds in the NHS in England has become so acute that on any given day last winter, the equivalent of more than five extra hospitals’-worth of beds had to be brought into service to cope with surges in demand | Nuffield Trust

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Image source: Nuffield Trust

On the single busiest day last winter, an extra 4,390 beds had to be opened, equivalent to more than seven extra hospitals in one day.  And on average, over 95% of beds across English hospitals were occupied every day last winter, despite evidence that once bed occupancy rates exceed 85%-90%, there is an increasing risk of infection (see note 1). Given that pressures on the health service have not lessened over the last 12 months, Trusts will face similarly high bed occupancy rates this winter.

Read the full overview here

Read the full report here

RPS standards for reporting and learning for incidents

The Royal Pharmaceutical Society has published Professional standards for the reporting, learning,  sharing, taking action and review of incidents.

These standards describe good practice and good systems of care for reporting, learning sharing, taking action and review of incidents as part of a patient safety culture. Their implementation will improve patient safety and the quality of pharmaceutical services.

GP Workload strain compromises patient safety

Unmanageable workload means GPs are struggling to provide safe care to patients, according to the results of a BMA survey.

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Image source: BMA

Findings from the recent survey of GPs in England highlight the alarming impact spiralling levels of demand are having on GPs, many of whom are increasingly unable to cope. Based on more than 5,000 responses, the survey found that 84 per cent of GPs report that unchecked and growing workload pressures are undermining their ability to provide safe and quality care. Of this figure, 57 per cent described their daily workloads as ‘unmanageable’ with a further 27 per cent saying that excessive pressures are directly impacting standards.

Read the full overview here

Read the full survey results here

Freedom to speak up in primary care

Freedom to speak up in primary care: guidance to primary care providers on supporting whistleblowing in the NHS | NHS England

kick-off-879382_1280This guidance aims to make it easier for all staff providing NHS primary care services to raise their concerns so that action can be taken and improvements made.

It details the principles and actions to apply in primary care when raising concerns about the delivery of primary care services to patients.

The guidance comes after Sir Robert Francis recommended that the principles outlined in his Freedom to Speak Up report be adapted for primary care, where smaller work settings can present challenges around anonymity and conflicts with employers.