Meet the team
QI Training Lead
Central London Community Healthcare NHS Trust
- England - London (North, East and Essex)
- England - London (South)
- England - London (West)
Data Analyst - Quality Improvement
Northampton General Hospital NHS Trust
- England - East Midlands
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- Professor Ali Al-Sherbaz
What is the challenge your project is going to address and how does it connect to your chosen theme?
Patients can feel dis-empowered to provide real-time feedback on their clinical care. Causes for this may be lack of opportunity to provide feedback or that the patients do not want to upset care providers and so do not always raise issues. There is variability in the level/quality of communication, given this is dependent on both the patient and healthcare professionals.
We know that key safety concerns can sometimes take a day or several days to address – timely action can reduce harm to patients.
There is currently no formal channel or forum for patients to escalate patient safety concerns. This is often communicated after discharge. Moreover, we do not currently have a method to evaluate patient perception of safety.
We are seeking to introduce an opportunity for true patient participation in delivering safe care. We aim to co-develop an app with patients, for patients.
This will provide staff with opportunities to make things right whilst patients under their care.
What does your project aim to achieve?
Our objective is to develop a mobile phone application (app) for patient and/or carer use in the inpatient setting. This app is currently being developed by the Patient Safety & QI team, in partnership with the University of Northampton.
The app can be used daily by patients and will ask them key questions relating to their safety in hospital. Questions include allergies, knowledge of their medical plan, observations and whether they have the correct wristband on. The final question posed to patients each day is whether they feel safe today. If a patient records ‘no’ to this question or other key questions, then this will be escalated to a staff member on the ward via the app. Appropriate escalation has been designed into the app to ensure a staff member discusses these concerns and rectifies problems (e.g. no wristband) in a timely manner.
We hope that through the app we will see an improvement in the proportion of patients who feel safe as well as a reduction in safety concerns.
How will the project be delivered?
We are working in collaboration with Professor of Computing at the University of Northampton to develop the application and back-end system. This is to ensure a robust, secure system is developed to protect data information.
The project is led by a Patient Safety & QI Project Manager. Working in partnership with our in-house patient representatives as well as current inpatients, she is co-designing the aesthetic of the app (to ensure ease of use) as well as the questions themselves. Patient interviews, focus groups and surveys are conducted to underpin this.
A timeline to develop the questions and app and pilot the app is in place, with support from the organisation and management teams in place for the pilot.
What and how is your project going to share learning throughout?
Data is captured in real-time and will be analysed and reported frequently by the Data Analyst in the Patient Safety & QI team. We will be reporting progress to a bi-monthly collaborative meeting with the university (as a form of assurance and governance).
Data will be reported via statistical process control charts and if there is interest, we would be happy to upload these to our hospital webpage.
Once the pilot is complete, we hope to share our findings with the wider Q network, through various forums and conferences. We are keen to develop a poster on this, which we will share, as well as publish our findings in a Quality or Safety journal.
This app lends itself to further roll-out to other organisations and we would be keen to support this.
How you can contribute
- We are co-designing the first version of the application with patient representatives - this will include critique of the design / aesthetic but also more importantly the questions themselves. We encourage additional input from other patient representatives as well as from healthcare staff - so please get in touch with your ideas.
- Our vision is that this app will be spread to other organisations once we have developed a working prototype. Please let us know if you are interested.
- Suggestions on the successful pilot and roll-out of this application (considering its logistics) would be welcome.
- If anyone has conducted previous studies or projects relating to patients' evaluation of their in-hospital safety, then please get in touch.
|31 Jul 2019||Complete patient interviews and qualitative data collection|
|9 Aug 2019||Test paper version of patient survey prior to upload on app|
|20 Sep 2019||Refine questions and upload to app|
|18 Oct 2019||Pilot app on small number of wards|