Hospital staff team up to deliver 'perfect week' of care
26 June 2014
Hospital staff are gearing up to try a new approach to tackling delays in the emergency department — by attempting to deliver a ‘perfect week’ of care.
Frontline clinical and behind the scenes staff at Southend
University Hospital will come together in an ambitious seven day
exercise between Monday 7 July and Sunday 13 July, dubbed 'The
Jacqueline Totterdell, chief executive at Southend University
Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, said: "This valuable exercise is
about colleagues from right across the Trust clearing their diaries
and pulling together; from across all areas and helping the entire
team sharpen our focus. Of course, no week is ever perfect, but we
want to benchmark the best we can be and see how close to perfect
we can get and what we need to do differently.
"Although we have met our emergency care targets for the past
two months, this exercise is about ensuring we have all of the
necessary things in place across the hospital to sustain that
performance and ensure that patients receive the right care, in the
right place, at the right time, every time."
Although the proactive exercise is just for one week it is hoped
that it will have a far-reaching positive impact on both the
patient experience and that of the people who work at the
Jacqueline added: "It really is a massive undertaking but will
act as a 'reboot' of sorts and is the perfect opportunity for us to
see where we are getting patient flow right and where we could be
doing it better."
The exercise is being run as a major incident with the executive
team as 'gold command' meeting twice a day so that any significant
issues raised can be dealt with there and then.
It will be all hands on deck, with staff asked to postpone
non-essential meetings, consultants asked to cancel non-clinical
work, and all colleagues encouraged to talk rather than email to
During the week executives and senior clinicians will make daily
visits to wards and departments. Non-clinical staff will also be
playing their part as ward liaison officers, supporting ward staff
in resolving time-consuming admin problems so that doctors, nurses
and health care staff can focus fully on direct patient care.
Such schemes have already been used in other hospitals across
the country such as Scarborough Hospital, Royal Liverpool
University Hospitals and East Lancashire Hospital NHS Trust, and is
the brainchild of the national emergency care intensive support
team who will be working with the team at Southend thorough the