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Case Study Wirral University Teaching Hospitals

Wirral University Teaching Hospitals embraces a culture of continuous improvement

Case Study
Les Porter Associate Director of Nursing
Client

As Wirral’s largest employer, Wirral University Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust (WUTH) is the thriving heart of the local community. Comprising Wirral’s only Emergency Department, it is one of the biggest and busiest acute NHS trusts in the North West. WUTH’s 6,258 strong workforce serves a population of approximately 400,000 people across Wirral, Ellesmere Port, Neston, North Wales and the wider North West footprint at two main hospital sites and at two health centres in the community.

Ward 38 at the Wirral University Teaching Hospital (WUTH) NHS Trust went from 11 staff vacancies and fluctuating staff morale to zero vacancies and a ward ‘full of smiles’ in just one year. As the ward team embraced new technologies and improvement processes, they became a 100% harm-free ward, an inspiration to other areas.

Wise up to WISE – individual, safe care for every patient every time

The top priority for WUTH is delivering high quality, individualised, safe care to all patients. In order to support this, the Trust developed a ward accreditation process known as Wirral, Individual, Safe Care, Every time (WISE). Based on a successful model that is currently used in other NHS hospitals, WISE encompasses additional elements to ensure local policies are accurately referenced. Wards are scored using the Ward Accreditation scoring matrix with those achieving consistent and consecutively high scores awarded WISE Ward status.

Quote

For the first time, we have access to a tool that allows our staff to see how they are doing at ward level. They are able to respond immediately if required.

Jenine Kelly Matron, WUTH

Meeting the ward accreditation challenge
Prior to WISE Accreditation, wards were reviewed annually using an admin-heavy workbook process. As a technology-focused Trust, WUTH partnered with Tendable to provide a digital solution that would encourage efficiency by reducing duplication and bureaucracy and create an engaging review process with high levels of transparency. The joint aim was to optimise Corporate Nursing resources, drive and sustain improvement and support the new accreditation process.

The team on Ward 38, the hospital’s busy respiratory ward, underwent their first WISE ward accreditation inspection in January 2019 and received a Level Two (amber) result. The newly appointed Ward Managers along with the multidisciplinary team were disappointed with their score and set about developing an improvement plan to support their transition towards attaining Level Three (Green) by their next inspection.

Over the next the ten months, the ward and divisional teams performed 298 inspections, including:

  • Adult Harms Prevention
  • Ward Managers
  • Matrons Inspections
  • Controlled Drug Management
  • Medication Management
  • House Keepers
  • Hand Hygiene
  • Mealtime Observation

Results were then discussed during daily safety huddles and at ward meetings with plans developed to rectify any issues identified.

The results were also presented in monthly newsletters to staff, along with best practice suggestions for improvement. Staff used Tendable to review results from other wards within the Trust, learning from others about how to improve the care delivered. In October 2019, the team’s hard work paid off when they received a Level Three result for their WISE ward accreditation.

Tendable supports Trust-wide Continuous Improvement Programme
WUTH’s Continuous Improvement Model requires ward teams to undertake a series of self-checks. Self-checks allow clinicians to identify and correct any issues at source without waiting for results of their accreditation inspection.

“For the first time, we have access to a tool that allows our staff to see how they are doing at a ward level. They are able to respond immediately if required.” Jenine Kelly, Matron, WUTH.

Tendable has had a tremendous and positive impact on WUTH’s continuous improvement programme. Every ward is provided with iPads to access the solution making it the ideal tool for clinicians and managers on the move. Real-time reporting has allowed staff to address issues immediately, empowering them to make changes and drive quality improvements.

Data from Tendable migrates to the Trusts BI Portal multiple times per day, populating a data base that is used from Board to Ward. The solution has encouraged active involvement from all levels of staff - from designing audits to understanding what the results mean. Ward teams have even used it to develop quizzes, engaging staff in a fun way and boosting team morale.

Additionally, the solution has eliminated large amounts of administration freeing up time for staff to care for patients. WUTH's Wards have been significantly improved since implementing Tendable as teams have embraced using the suites of inspections and undertaken actions to improve patient safety, experience and their scores!

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