Looking after vulnerable people with mental health conditions, Alpha Hospitals provides a safe environment within which its patients are supported, cared for and rehabilitated. Continuously looking to drive its safety standards and governance forward, it has rolled-out a patient safety software system, giving staff faster access to patient incident and accident information, greater visibility of risk management trends and prioritisation, and better ability to retrieve the information they need. Together this means improved care for patients.
The patient safety software is supplied by Datix and is used extensively within the NHS. The governance team at Alpha Hospitals worked closely with Datix to adapt its software to ensure it closely met the needs of Alpha Hospitals, supporting teams in their delivery of high quality patient care.
Close monitoring of every patient is vital and should an incident occur, it is essential for all of the patient’s care team to be aware of the incident and associated change in patient risk. Before the new electronic system was implemented, incidents noted on paper records would be typed by administrators into a database for analysis, which took time leading to inevitable processing delays.
The new system enables staff to record incidents onto the electronic system immediately and allows automatic notifications to be sent to the relevant members of the clinical team, ensuring they are fully-appraised of a patient’s risk status and so can make the best possible care decisions.
Management also have instant access to accurate information logged by the patient facing team and can review trends readily, enabling them to be more agile and rigorous in making change decisions. It is key that we are able to review trends readily so we can learn lessons and improve patient care.
Alpha Hospitals works in partnership with the NHS and values the feedback and advice given by NHS England and the Care Quality Commission (CQC). The new software was selected as it adheres to CQC standards and helps the organisation retrieve quickly the information it needs in-order to make patient care decisions and an accurate assessment of incident trends within each hospital. The software has also been adapted to ensure that the hospital holds an accurate ‘organisational memory’ of what the CQC needs to know. Staff are prompted on the system to record exactly the required information, to ensure there are no gaps in information shared.
Reports are regularly requested by other partners, such as external Social Workers and GPs, also involved in the care of each patient. This previously required nurses and consultants to review six months or more of notes, to compile each report. With the new system, reports can be run automatically, enabling accurate, clear reports to be produced in a fraction of the time, freeing the care team to spend more time with patients.
Commenting on the system, Joanne Scott, Head of Governance at Alpha Hospitals said “A more informed care team, management and NHS partners, leads to better care for our patients. We are delighted by the enhancements already seen as a result of the new patient safety software”.