Involving people in health and care guidance

The two sets of guidance, and a wealth of web based resources and best practice, together supersede the original ‘Transforming Participation in Health and Care’ guidance, which was published in 2013 | NHS England

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In response to user feedback, elements of the original guidance have been retained and new features introduced, including a greater focus on people with the greatest health needs, and information on the practicalities of involvement.

The links between individual and collective involvement in health are clear; people who have advanced knowledge, skills and confidence to manage their own health are more likely to get involved at a group/community level in having a say about health and health services. Equally, those who have been involved in the commissioning process (planning, buying and monitoring) health services are more likely to be informed about health and health services; they will therefore be better placed to manage their own health and be involved about decisions relating to their care and treatment.

Treatments and technologies matter, but patients most want to be seen as people

Patient stories are a raw and compelling new kind of online feedback. They can prompt rapid improvements in services – if the NHS is willing to embrace them | The Guardian Healthcare Network

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People have always shared their experiences of healthcare, usually privately, with family, neighbours or workmates. But online, patients and carers are increasingly willing to share accounts of their health service encounters with the wider world, often in intimate detail. There are websites devoted to collecting and publicising patient ratings and reviews of healthcare professionals, services, diagnoses and treatments.

The stories of patients and carers are becoming an unavoidable part of modern healthcare. In the US, people searching online for information about local services are more likely to read patient comments than official clinical outcome measures or patient experience metrics. In the UK, staff routinely read online patient feedback and share it on social media. NHS regulators have even started to think in terms of monitoring and analysing patient stories to provide an “early warning” for when things might be going wrong.

Read the full news story here

Exploring the perspectives of patients with dementia about the hospital environment

Hung, L. et al. International Journal of Older People Nursing. Published online: 18 April 2017

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Background: Recognising demographic changes and importance of the environment in influencing the care experience of patients with dementia, there is a need for developing the knowledge base to improve hospital environments. Involving patients in the development of the hospital environment can be a way to create more responsive services. To date, few studies have involved the direct voice of patients with dementia about their experiences of the hospital environment.

Conclusions: Patient participants persuasively articulated the supportive and unsupportive elements in the environment that affected their well-being and care experiences. They provided useful insights and pointed out practical solutions for improvement. Action research offers patients not only opportunities to voice their opinion, but also possibilities to contribute to hospital service development.

Read the full article here

Care for older people

‘Worked up? Speak up’ – Care for older people campaign launches | Care Quality Commission

 

The aim of this campaign is to get more people aged 60 and over, and their friends and families, to share their experiences of health and social care. Research has shown that older people are less likely to complain about services and less aware of the different ways they can share their views.

Engaging Health Care Volunteers to Pursue the Triple Aim

New reimbursement models, pressure to reduce costs, increased emphasis on prevention and relentless focus on the patient experience and clinical outcomes require attention to patients and families in new ways | American Hospital Association

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Image source: AHA

As hospitals, health systems and other providers navigate this evolution, health care volunteers stand out as key contributors in the success of pursuing the Triple Aim, a framework developed by the Institute for Healthcare Improvement that outlines an approach for maximizing the performance of the health care system. The intent is that every activity or process be aligned with these three domains:

  • Improving the patient experience of care (including quality and satisfaction)
  • Improving the health of populations
  • Reducing the per-capita cost of health care.

High-performing health care organizations are striving to adhere to these principles as they seek to best serve their patients, families and communities.

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Image source: AHA

This resource showcases how Volunteer Services strategically supports the Triple Aim. The information comes from interviews with volunteers, auxilians, directors of volunteer services and chief executive officers, who shared critical success factors in engaging volunteers in these efforts. It features case examples depicting how volunteers support the Triple Aim, including programs dedicated to:

  • Reducing avoidable readmissions
  • Improving the patient experience
  • Improving HCAHPS scores
  • Enhancing community engagement
  • Improving quality
  • Increasing health care access
  • Lowering health care costs
  • Improving patient safety

Read the full report here

Patient experience headlines tool

A tool to enable NHS staff to access a range of patient experience measures so they can benchmark their organisation’s performance | NHS Improvement

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Image source: NHS Improvement

The tool was developed in partnership with trusts to enable staff to access key sources of published patient experience measures all in one place.

You can get a sense of how your organisation is doing compared to others with similar characteristics. You can move the data around and generate simple graphs which show your progress.

Read the full overview here

Find the tool here

Diaries for critical care patients

Teece, A. BMJ Evidence-Based Nursing blog. Published online: 8 January 2017

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Critical care nurses have a duty to provide rehabilitative care (NICE, 2009). So how can nurses make a positive impact on their patients’ psychological recovery? Patient diaries are increasing in popularity in the UK after originating in Scandinavia. The subject of a recent Cochrane review (Ullman et al., 2015), the evidence base for diaries and guidance for those completing them remains scanty. However, the premise is simple and low cost. Nurses complete entries throughout the patient’s critical care admission, describing events and the environment in layman’s terms. The diary is given to the patient after discharge, often at a follow-up clinic where further support can be accessed. The aim is, simply, to fill in memory gaps and encourage discussion.

Read the full blog post here