Earlier in the week I joined the second meeting of our Research and Innovation Steering Group with colleagues from across the Trust and the University of Portsmouth. As I mentioned last week, we are continuing to strengthen our links with the University and our partnership with them is central to the success of our strategy to promote better uptake of research and innovation, ensuring the benefit is felt by our patients and across our communities. This allows us to build on the positive reputation which we have built for research and innovation over a number of years and consider ways in which we can make an even greater difference to the quality of care and treatment we provide each day.
Over the past two weeks we have seen a measured improvement in our urgent care performance with improved flow across the hospital. The number of patients being discharged each day has improved, there are fewer patients requiring discharge into the community and we have needed to use less escalation capacity. As a result of this we have seen more patients spending less time within our emergency department and we have seen a significant improvement in the time it takes for ambulance crews to handover patients to our care. We are still seeing high numbers of attendances but the flow through the hospital is much improved and means our patients and many of our teams have a much better experience as a result. Thank you to all those across the hospital and within our partner organisations who have contributed to this improvement. We need to continue to sustain these benefits across all areas and we will be shortly communicating our whole system improvement plan which aims to do exactly that.
During the week I had the opportunity to spend time with some teams and services as part of the Executive Team’s regular ‘Working Together’ programme where we spend time alongside colleagues learning more about their roles and the work they do each day. It was great to have the opportunity to spend time with members of our Phlebotomy team out on the wards on Wednesday, to see the breadth of the service they provide. Our team sees over 1,000 patients every day and play a significant role in the care of so many of our patients who are staying with us or are seen as outpatients. I also visited our e-rostering team who are currently overseeing the roll out of Allocate, our new e-rostering solution. I learnt more about the benefits it will bring to many of us in clinical and support roles, freeing up time and capacity which can then be focused on direct patient care. Thank you to both teams for being so generous with their time.
I also had the opportunity to meet with Alex Lochrane, Chief Executive of Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance this week. It was helpful to talk about the positive relationship we have and discussed some of the ways in which the service is likely to develop to meet the needs of the population it covers. Whilst their service is hosted by University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust as the major trauma centre in the region, there’s a clear need for us to have an ongoing relationship with the service given the number of patients we treat who are transported to us via air ambulance.
And finally a reminder that Professor Brian Dolan returns to the Trust next Wednesday to host a workshop on the subject of ‘Make patient time the most important currency in healthcare’. Brian is a passionate and inspirational speaker and his message about how we can all take simple actions to help improve care for our patients is one which will resonate with us all. His session and indeed the messages relate to all patients, not only those who are inpatients with us, but those in outpatients and those receiving same day care. Although both sessions are fully booked, you can follow the activity on our Trust Twitter feed (@QAHospitalNews) and we are hoping to record the session and share it on our YouTube page. We are hoping that Brian will return later in the year and will ensure we offer those dates to those who have not been able to attend.
Thank you, as ever, for the incredible work you do each and every day.
Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust