Senior staff from Noble’s Hospital have today briefed Tynwald Members on the patient safety systems at the hospital. The presentation, which gave an overview of existing systems as well as the current agenda, is designed to show the significant work Noble’s Hospital has undertaken since the publication of its first Patient Safety strategy in 2002.
Minister for Health, David Anderson MHK, said: “I think it’s extremely important that both my political colleagues in Tynwald and the wider public understand that patient safety is not a new concept. The UK national issues surrounding the safety of patients – particularly as a result of the scandal in Mid-Staffordshire which led to the Public Inquiry by Robert Francis QC – means that all hospitals are witnessing an unprecedented level of scrutiny. Patient safety is therefore firmly on the agenda with clinicians, politicians and the media, and firmly in the public eye, both in the UK and here in the Isle of Man.”
Member for Health Services, Dudley Butt MLC, said: “Patient safety is a long standing discipline in its own right but recent scandals have brought a much sharper focus on its importance and opened systems up to greater public and political scrutiny.
“Patient safety is completely integrated and embedded within the NHS, both here and in the UK. As with healthcare itself, the field of patient safety is constantly evolving as best practice and clinical guidance change. Clinicians and managers are very aware that we need to continuously adapt, and we can see this within our own health service with the development of the new Neonatal Unit for example, which is a direct result of changes to national and international clinical guidance and best practice.
“The five Patient Safety Workstreams which have been devised and are being led by clinicians at Noble’s Hospital, are another example of this and they are being used to examine the future challenges that the Isle of Man and the UK face in providing ever safer and more effective care.”
Minister Anderson added: “The message I want to get to the public is that patient safety measures are in place at Noble’s Hospital and across the Health Service. It is important however to appreciate that patient safety systems are always being reviewed and enhanced, both locally and nationally.
“The pace of change is clearly an issue that is challenging for the Department and Government as a whole, as many of the developments we would all like to see require additional resources; whether that’s clinical space, money, or staff. But I would like to assure the public and clinicians that progress is being made and will continue, through the workstreams, the Francis Report Working Group, and our external quality assurance review by the West Midlands Quality Review Service. All of these measures represent a comprehensive body of work that the Department has put in place to help drive the future delivery of better and safer care for patients – and it is this which is our number one priority.”
The presentation highlighted several key patient safety systems in place at Noble’s Hospital, such as:
- The Patient Safety and Quality Committee chaired by Medical Director – an overarching committee involving senior clinicians and managers to drive the patient safety agenda
- Patient Experience Indicators / Nursing Care Indicators – measures of patient satisfaction and nursing care
- ‘Back to the Floor’ programme for senior clinical staff
- Noble’s Hospital Patient Safety Forum – a bi-monthly forum where all clinicians are released from elective care and can share concerns and best practice
- Patient and public representatives – lay representatives who have input into and scrutinise care at Noble’s Hospital
- Patient Safety Walks – regular spot checks of clinical environments
- Clinical, internal and national audits – reviewing clinical care both internally and in comparison with other care providers nationally
- Serious Patient Safety Reviews – a comprehensive system to review serious issues relating to patient safety
- Incident Reporting – the internal system to report any and all patient concerns.