Last year, the Care Quality Commission (CQC) – the body that inspects hospitals for quality and safety – found that three-quarters of the 79 hospital trusts visited under its new inspection regime had safety problems. They warned that safety across the NHS and care sectors in England was of “significant concern”, particularly in hospitals.
Quality Improvement: the key to a better service
Quality Improvement (QI) is a process through which a urology department, or any hospital department, can look at the service they provide, identify areas for improvement, and then act on those areas through a structured QI process so that their service can improve.
In reality QI could improve almost anything in health care. With origins in manufacturing and engineering, QI could reduce waiting times, reduce the amount of time spent in hospital after an operation, and reduce the risk of an infection or sepsis, it could create seamless patient pathways and even save lives.
There is a new TUF-sponsored research programme that has the potential to change the face of health care in England.
EQUIP (Education in Quality Improvement Programme) is looking at how urology health care professionals can learn more and more from the incidents they encounter and to instil this culture of learning within the NHS so that patient care will always be improving. The programme aims to be applicable across all healthcare disciplines and is starting to make in-roads.
A new course is being developed by researchers in the Centre for Implementation Science in collaboration with urologists from Barts Health NHS Foundation Trust tailored for trainee urologists. The course will equip them with the skills to analyse patient safety incidents and concerns around care quality, then to develop collaborative quality improvement work. Urologists who complete this training will then have the skills to share learning and best practice with their peers and urology departments in other NHS trusts. This project was adopted by CLAHRC South London in November 2016.
Invitation to submit a guest QI blog post
If you would like to get involved with the EQUIP project or you simply would like to share your reflections on the impact of Covid-19 on Quality Improvement, including challenges and/or opportunities for improvement work and implementing a change,
Then why not write and submit your QI blog post to us and we will publish it on the EQUIP website