02 August 2016

The key to achieving a high quality culture of care

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Akolade’s National Standards Excellence forum will provide a platform for the exchange of ideas and best practice in the healthcare sector.

Since the implementation of the NSQHS standards in 2013, we have seen improvements in the quality of care. However, the Australian Council on Safety and Quality in Healthcare found have found that 90% of safety problems are still based in the system rather than the individual.

From August 30 to September 1 2016, the conference will gather experts from public and private hospitals and healthcare facilities to discuss strategies for achieving continual quality and safety improvements in a time of innovation and transformation.

We recently spoke to David Evans, Chief Executive Officer of Northumbria NHS Healthcare in the United Kingdom. David offered these insights into what makes a high quality culture of care:

Northumbria Healthcare NHS has received numerous awards recognising your high quality culture of care and recently received an ‘outstanding’ rating from the Care Quality Commission. What do you think makes Northumbria such a high quality healthcare provider?

Our staff and the mature relationship between the Trust and its staff. We have a clinically led system of management with the executive having devolved responsibility and also of course accountability to clinical teams. This has allowed us to have a common goal of high quality safe and effective care.

Northumbria was also named ‘Best Place to Work’ in 2015. How crucial is staff satisfaction to the overall quality of service provision?

Key, see above. Again a mature and flexible approach. We all have Trust wide contracts so move around between our 10 inpatient sites and 24 outpatient settings. For our consultant staff we have annualised contracts with service level agreements which allows flexible working . This is very unusual in the UK system. We have a very open and honest culture and very flat management structures without hierarchies.

 What advice can you offer healthcare organisations trying implement cultures of change and quality improvement?

Mature and adult conversations with staff, clinical leadership with accountability, united to a common goal with patients first, open data. No backdoor deals, no corridor conversations, no games to be played.

We’re looking forward to hearing from you at the event. Would you be able to tell us a little about what we can expect?

I will be telling the story of how over 15 years, a small secondary care provider united to become one of only 5 of the UK’s ‘ Outstanding ‘ providers of hospital services by engaging and working with its staff , developing clinical leadership and providing systems in which they could work. Developing a unifying vision of how we could do things better and with extensive consultation with the population we serve changing our pattern of providing emergency care by developing the UKs first specialist emergency care hospital.

Hear what delegates have said about our previous events:

As a new person to the quality management world, the wealth of knowledge within the room was great to be surrounded by. I found that the presenters were very engaging and found the content very appropriate and beneficial.
Qscan Radiology Clinics

Conference provided a great forum for networking and was very informative.”
Mackay Hospital and Health Service

Interesting, informative, educational and delivered professionally.”

PA Hospital

Claire Dowler is a Conference Producer with Akolade. She recently graduated with a double degree: a Bachelor of Journalism and a Bachelor of Media and Communications Studies majoring in International Communication. Claire thought it sounded more impressive.

A ballroom-dancer who collects salt and pepper shakers and volunteers for animal rescue, you might say Claire has eclectic interests.

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