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Co production team presenting at the Royal College of Psychiatry Quality Improvement Conference

Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust Quality Improvement team will be presenting their co-production workshop at the Quality Improvement in Practice Annual Conference hosted by Royal College of Psychiatry taking place on Monday 18 November. 

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Designed and delivered by Sarah Curtis, service user and supported by Sara Courtney, Nathan Clifford, Dawn Pease, Chris Curtis and Lou Salmon, this session will discuss what co-production is, why it is important and how our Trust is using co-production in Quality Improvement.

It will use the example of Kingsley Ward, an adult acute mental health ward based in Winchester, which was one of the Trust’s first QI projects back in September 2018.  By using QI methodology and listening to staff, service users and carers, it was revealed that the balance between quality of care and office work on Kingsley Ward was not right and having a detrimental effect on staff, carers and most importantly patients.

Staff were spending too much time with paperwork and not enough time with the patients. This in turn was causing boredom amongst patients which often led to frustrating behaviour and aggression towards staff.

Observations had led to the conclusion that there was duplication in the paperwork and management of the ward, which led to three key areas being identified and new approaches developed by patients, carers and frontline staff working together. These were:

  1. Observations – patients would now meet with their named nurse each shift and have more meaningful 1-2-1 time. There would be no half-hourly observations, but continued hourly night-time observations
  2. Ward Rounds – a new ward round was developed to enable patients to be seen weekly in ward rounds, to feel included in their care, and schedule time slots to allow for others supporting the patient to join, so family and carers could come along.
  3. Signing Out Process – a more streamlined process for signing out was developed, aimed at reducing patient and carer frustration, reducing duplication of work and freeing up staff to help with escorted leave.

As a result staff now have a great deal more time on the ward.  Time being used for things such as games with patients, and quality conversations.  They are also able to attend to patient requests more quickly – for example, escorted leave.

The feedback from staff, patients and carers speaks for itself.

Staff – “really don’t want to go back to the old system – it feels like we have more time to care and not be too intrusive.

Carer - Very impressed with the new ward round.  More inclusive and better planning for patients and families.

Carer - The ward feels like a friendly place.

Lou Salmon, Ward Manager, Kingsley Ward – “People listen more when Sarah, Chris and Lesley (patients and carers) are part of the team – staff may have been saying these things for years, but when we are doing it together brings more people on board. I feel driven to share my excitement at the impact the changes have had with both staff and patients saying they are happier.  I am convinced this is the way forward. All the staff really positively received it – after an initial period of anxiety as we were doing something different and what if something went wrong.  Those who had been more heavily involved were more passionate about it, those who we weren’t able to involve were a bit more sceptical, they didn’t feel as involved – but once they could see that it worked, then everyone was on board and that then gave us the momentum because everything that we did overall made everybody’s lives better – patients, carers and staff.”

Lou will be presenting their findings on coproduction alongside Sarah, Chris, Sara, Dawn and Nathan at the conference on 18 November.  Why not follow their story on twitter @shft_transforms using the #coproductioninaction.

More information about Quality Improvement is available on our website www.southernhealth.nhs.uk/qi

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