Always Events are defined as “those aspects of the patient and family experience that should always occur when patients interact with healthcare professionals and the health care delivery system”. NHS England, in collaboration with Picker Institute Europe the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) and NHS Improvement have been leading an initiative for developing, implementing, and spreading an approach to reliably integrate Always Events into routine frontline services.
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Always Events is a co-production quality improvement methodology which seeks to understand what really matters to patients, people who use services, their families and carers and then co-design changes to improve experience of care.
Genuine partnerships between patients, service users, care providers, and clinicians are the foundation for co-designing and implementing reliable solutions that transform care experiences with the goal being an “Always Experience.”
The creation of an Always Event® is a practical methodology for achieving this goal by asking patients and people who use services “What matters to you?” in addition to “What’s the matter?”
There are now more than 100 provider organisations actively working to codesign Always Events, and this met the 2018 NHS Mandate deliverable of 100 trusts by 31 March. The 2020 goal in the NHS Mandate is to ensure that ‘patients, their families and carers are involved, through co- production, in defining what matters most in the quality of experience of services and assessing and improving the quality of NHS services’.
Picker Europe recently evaluated the implementation and spread of Always Events and the key learnings include:
- The importance of having an oversight team and senior staff level support to provide accountability and commitment
- Linking the Always Events framework to organisational strategies and quality improvement work aids spread and sustainability
- Aligning the work with other quality improvement projects/teams can be useful
- Understanding that it can take time for the tests of change to be tested and embedded and that support from other people/teams/departments can be helpful
- Staff engagement is key to success
- The importance of promoting the Always Event to increase awareness and engage staff
- It can be challenging to ensure the Always Event is truly co-designed with patients; it requires staff to start with a blank canvas and not come up with their own solutions
- It is important for trusts to consider early on how the changes introduced through their Always Event will be measured for reliability, impact and to ensure sustainability
Join the call to find out more and ask questions…..
This Zoom video call is organised by Q’s Coproduction Special Interest Group (open to all). Please join the group to find out about future meetings, and share your coproduction interests and challenges
I am a qualified nurse with experience of working in both acute and community settings. In my substantive role I led the Quality Improvement and Experience Team and the implementation of Always Events (registered trademark and owned by the Institute for Health care Improvement) at Lancashire Care. This includes participation in the NHS England Always Event pilot in partnership with the Institute for Healthcare Improvement and Picker Europe. Always Events are those aspects of care that should always occur when people and family members interact with healthcare professionals and the health care delivery system. I am passionate about people being at the heart of everything we do, quality improvement and co-designing improvements and Always Events are a fantastic way to bring these 3 things to life. I am currently on secondment with NHS England leading the #AlwaysEvents programme.
I am a qualified nurse, working for many years in the acute sector before moving into Health Promotion and then Public Health, leading on tobacco control whilst undertaking a Master’s in Public Health. For the last 5 years I have worked as leadership Support Manager, and for the last 3 years of those I have worked on the Always Events programme. I have built up extensive knowledge of the methodology and have heard and seen first-hand the many improvements to the experience of care that have happened as a result of patients, people using services and their families and carers being involved in codesigning and coproducing small changes using the Always Events methodology.