Belfast Trust Chairman’s Awards - Recognising staff and benefiting patients

08/02/2010

People using health and social care services in Belfast are set to benefit from a range of new developments by staff in Belfast Trust.

The developments include an obesity management programme for teenagers, an outreach service for gay men, patient courier service which reduces the amount of time patients have to wait for investigations, a home dialysis programme and a service to help staff work to best effect with people who have a learning disability.

These developments were highlighted in the Trusts Annual Chairman’s Awards.

People using health and social care services in Belfast are set to benefit from a range of new developments by staff in Belfast Trust.

The developments include an obesity management programme for teenagers, an outreach service for gay men, patient courier service which reduces the amount of time patients have to wait for investigations, a home dialysis programme and a service to help staff work to best effect with people who have a learning disability.

These developments were highlighted in the Trusts Annual Chairman’s Awards.

Chairman of the Trust Pat McCartan said, "The entries for this year’s awards were of the highest quality and will ultimately bring benefits to everyone who use our services. These awards are testament to the ingenuity and creativity of our staff, demonstrating their dedication in putting the patient and client at the centre of everything they do."

The five categories in the awards reflects the Trust's corporate objectives, and the finalists in each of the  categories received a cheque to be reinvested in their service area.


Safety and Quality Category Winner: The Pharmacist, the patient and pre-operative Assessment Team

The introduction of a clinical pharmacist to the pre-operative assessment team at Musgrave Park Hospital has resulted in a 92% reduction in the number of inaccurate pre-operative medication histories and 100% reduction in the number of medicines incidents that occurred on admission due to an inaccurate pre-operative medication history.

Medication errors can occur more commonly at the time of patient admission, so the early assessment of each patient by a pharmacist ensures an accurate medicines history and has been shown to reduce risk

The introduction of the pharmacist at the pre-operative assessment clinic has brought benefits to patient safety and helped to reduce the workload of pre-operative assessment and ward based staff. It has also freed up time which is now used to focus on in patient medication reviews and discharge prescription planning.


Partnership Category Winner: Tell it Like it Is

Making sure the voices of people with learning disabilities are fully heard and their views acted on is a challenge. But staff at Muckamore, in partnership with the Association for Real Change and patients with learning disability, have it cracked.

‘Tell it like it is’ provides a voice for Muckamore patients unhappy at the speed of their resettlement agenda, allows them to tell their own stories and help decision makers fully understand their views and concerns.

Their efforts have influenced policy makers and politicians alike and a group member now sits on the Resettlement Steering Group. The projects initial success is now being extended to learning disability services in the community.


Resources Category Winner: First Class Delivery!

The Special Investigations Unit at the Royal is home to the Pulmonary Functions Laboratory, the Gastro-intestinal Laboratory, the Clinical Vascular Laboratory, the Neurophysiology department and the Cardiology Investigation unit.

They all used to rely heavily on the dispatch couriers service – as did everyone else!

Pressure on the couriers could often result in long waits for patients - coming from and gong to the ward.

Some patients with a cardiac monitor could be accompanied by a junior doctor or nurse. With no way of speeding up the patient’s return journey the staff member ended up being away from the ward longer than should be.

A reorganisation of resources saw porters becoming part of the department team. A dispatch team approach maximised availability and response times. Each of the five independent departments also began to work more closely.

The outcomes? A safe, friendly and efficient service.


People Category Winner: Management of aggression training for hospital security staff

Part of the ‘Zero Tolerance on the Abuse of Staff’ initiative encourages staff to acquire skills training in a range of areas including the management of actual and potential aggression.

The Trust’s Management of Aggression team has worked with security services managers from three hospitals sites to identify a comprehensive training package which equips security services staff with accredited management of aggression skills training. They have also worked on a whole systems approach, to include Risk Assessment and Management approaches as well as training

This training element has had an immediate beneficial impact on Patient & Client Support security services. It has provided staff with a dramatic increase in knowledge and skills in managing actual and potential aggression and awarded them with competencies that are nationally recognised.


Modernisation Category Winner: Outreach services for Gay men

Traditionally, gay and bi sexual men have not regularly used the services of Genito Urinary Medicine or GUM clinics. Despite increases in sexually transmissible infections, many gay and bi sexual men have been shown to be less likely to be tested in conventional GUM clinics. Staff at the Royal Victoria Hospital GUM clinic have addressed these issues with two initiatives.

A gay men’s evening clinic is held once a week in the Royal. It offers a walk in or an appointment service and provides full STI testing, vaccinations, free condoms and sexual health advice.

Monthly outreach sessions at two Belfast sauna venues have also been introduced. They provide assessments, tests, and vaccination and information services. Almost 600 men, many of whom may not have attended traditional GUM clinics, have used both services to date.