The first Emergency Department (ED) collaborative event took place on the 21 September 2017 at the Kassam Stadium in Oxford. The success of the regional approach of the sepsis workstream prompted two nurses from Buckinghamshire’s ED to approach the Patient Safety Collaborative with a request to consider a similar model for EDs within the region.
Within a short period, members of the ED multidisciplinary teams from across the region committed to the idea of a shared learning event and agreed a theme for the event, ‘Safety in the Emergency department’. The event was aimed at doctors, nurses, healthcare assistants, clinical support workers and ambulance staff. Four out of the five trusts in the region were represented, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Frimley/Wexham Park and Royal Berkshire.
The key note speaker was Dr Emma Redfern, Consultant in Emergency Medicine and Associate Medical Director of Patient Safety, University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust. Emma’s presentation focussed on the real challenges of identifying the sick and deteriorating patient, ‘Where’s Wally?’ within an overcrowded emergency department with insufficient staff numbers for the number of patients being treated.
Introducing the ED safety checklist, a simple tool designed to be completed for every single patient who presented to the emergency department, whether the department was experiencing overcrowding or not, the purpose was to provide guidance for staff unused to working in the emergency department and to ensure no essential tasks were missed. NHS improvement have urged hospitals trusts across the country to use this initiative to standardise and improve the delivery of basic care in emergency departments.
The value of developing a partnership approach to stream lining services around the needs of the patient was developed in a joint presentation from South Central Ambulance Services (SCAS) Heads of Operations.
Members of the team from Royal Berkshire shared their pioneering research into the experience of patients within the ED environment. Experience based co-design is a patient centred quality improvement programme where both staff and volunteer patients contributed their thoughts. The output of the research, Quality Time; Experienced based co-design in the emergency department is available on Healthtalk.org.
Patient were overwhelmingly thankful to be offered the opportunity to be involved in research and recognised the value of research in improving patient safety and quality of care.
Quote from the day ‘We are not alone, we all have the same issues, more heads and experience builds knowledge and improves patient care’.