#TOTW from 01-04-15 ‘The humble hospital gown is a metaphor for how we can transform the NHS’

It’s like we had a great flight, but the airports at either end were awful,” said one patient of their experience of going into hospital for surgery.

As per the norm, my weekly blogette is intended to be ingested within about 5 minutes, thus allowing you to return to whatever it was you were doing beforehand!

As you should already know by now I am quite passionate about patient care and all things to do with making the patient experience as stressless as possible, so when I happened across this short article this week I just had to share…and share again as my #TOTW:

The humble is a metaphor for how we can transform the

Damon Kamming, a consultant ­anaesthetist at University College London hospitals, writes about his experience as a patient when he found himself on the other side of the fence:

Patient feedback provides invaluable intelligence and insightful ideas about how to improve care and redesign services. Patients are our greatest assets for quality improvement – and we need to ask their help to better the care we deliver. Partnering with patients to improve their experience is the only way we will understand what matters most to our patients and how we can make things better.”

Simple, but effective in terms of patient care, and at the end of the day, that’s the business we are in…caring for patients!

#TOTW (from 26-11-14) ‘Healthcare professionals must listen to patients’ dying wishes’

Short n’ sweet again this week as I’ve just finished nights and am back in work tomorrow!

I’ve chosen a very interesting topic for this week’s #TOTW, namely that of how and where we choose to die! It’s a really good piece written by Dr Lucy Ison who is a senior house officer at North Middlesex hospital:

Healthcare professionals must listen to patients’ dying wishes

It will only take 5 minutes to read, and hopefully it will lead you to have, what is naturally a difficult conversation with those you love, as to how and where you’d like to shuffle off this mortal coil!

Read it and comment!

#TOTW (from: 17-11-14) ‘Let’s End Going Home Alone’

This week I find myself wanting to highlight the problems of elderly people being discharged from hospital to empty homes and a lack of support, so this week’s #TOTW is:

Please watch this short video

PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE spare just over 2 minutes of your time to watch this video from the Royal Voluntary Service and see if there is anything you can do to help, be it watching the video and sharing it on your social media, volunteering yourself or making a donation to the Royal Voluntary Service.

Thank you!

#TOTW (from 20-10-14): ‘Do not resuscitate’ patient controversy

For this week’s #TOTW i’ve chosen to highlight the issue of DNR or Do Not Resuscitate notices in patient’s notes:

‘Do not resuscitate’ patient controversy

This is a really interesting clip from a regional BBC Inside Out programme (the link to which is provided in the link above). It talks about the issues involved in raising this with patients and their families, and the distress that can result from it not be handled with compassion and sensitivity. I thought it interesting that one of the relatives noted that the person that came to discuss the matter with them did not even introduce themselves. This is not only disappointing and insensitive – under the circumstances – but down right rude and contrary to most health care professionals codes of conduct. It is a basic and common courtesy to introduce yourself to your patient.

Please take the time to watch the short (only 4 mins) clip, and maybe even watch the full Inside out programme to learn a bit more about DNR notices and how you or members of your family may be affected by them.

#TOTW (from 15-06-14): ‘Hospital patients to get named doctor’

This week’s #TOTW is:

‘Hospital patients to get named doctor’ via

To me this is not something that is new and a good idea, and wouldn’t it be nice to have. To have a named doctor who is responsible for your care in hospital, and someone that you have met and can talk to about your care, or the care of a relative/loved one is a fundamental right. The Academy of Medical Royal Colleges was asked by the Government to draw up guidelines following the Francis Report into the scandal at the Mid Staffordshire NHS Trust:

http://www.midstaffspublicinquiry.com/report

To have a “The Name over the Bed” of your senior doctor is one of the suggestions from their report:

http://www.aomrc.org.uk/general-news/academy-publishes-guidelines-on-responsible-consultant-clinician-the-name-over-the-bed.html

There’s not really much to say about this, other than it should be implemented as soon as possible, as it goes to the heart of patient care and maintaining patient dignity in hospital. Patients have the right to know who is responsible for their care in order to help them feel that they are not just one of many on a list (which of course in one respect they are), but that they do have someone who is overseeing the care they are receiving. Patients meet many people during a stay in hospital, and knowing peoples names is an absolute basic, as I have tweeted and blogged about before in relation to the #hellomynameis campaign.

So to all the health professionals out there, please, please, please continue to introduce yourself to your patients, and explain to them who you are and what you are doing. It’s such a simple thing to do, yet one that can make such a big difference to how patients feel.

That’s it for this week, see you next week! Who knows what the topic will be about this time next week…I certainly don’t!

#TOTW (from 04-06-14): ‘It’s not all doom and gloom in the NHS’

This week was a difficult choice to make, but in the end I decided to go with:

‘It’s not all doom and gloom for the NHS’ via

http://www.theguardian.com/healthcare-network/2014/jun/04/not-doom-gloom-nhs

All too often the NHS is criticised for being under-resourced and over-worked, which of course it is and always will be! I don’t believe there will ever be a time in which we could stand back and say right, we have enough staff and there is plenty of money in the budget! Let’s just learn to accept this and praise the NHS for the great institution that it is, and the amazing work that is done day in, day out by so many people.

Listen to Rob Webster’s (Chief Executive of the NHS Confederation) conference speech here:

http://www.nhsconfed.org/news/2014/06/protect-nhs-funding-for-the-next-decade-says-nhs-confederation-chief

So, whatever your views on the NHS, how it performs and how it should be funded in the future, just remember how lucky we are to have such a service here in the UK and not to take it for granted!

Bring on the next week of tweeting!

#hellomynameis…

This is taken from http://drkategranger.wordpress.com/2013/09/04/hellomynameis/ (Posted on September 4th, 2013)

I was recently a hospital in-patient with post-operative sepsis following a stent exchange procedure. During this admission I made some observations on the quality of my care. Perhaps the starkest of these was that not every member of staff who approached me introduced themselves. We have it drilled into us on day 1 of Clinical Medicine learning that starting the relationship with a patient begins with an introduction. It was easy marks in our exams. I’m sure it is the same for nursing and other healthcare professionals too. But something has failed…

As a healthcare professional you know so much about your patient. You know their name, their personal details, their health conditions, who they live with and much more. What do we as patients know about our healthcare professionals? The answer is often absolutely nothing, sometimes it seems not even their names. The balance of power is very one-sided in favour of the healthcare professional.

I have always been a strong believer in getting to know people’s names as part of building good working relationships with both patients and other colleagues. I think it is the first rung on the ladder to providing compassionate care and often getting the simple things right, means the more complex things will follow more easily and naturally.

So here the idea of #hellomynameis is born. If you support this idea please leave a comment below with your introduction to a patient. By doing this you are pledging to introduce yourself to every patient you meet. Please share this page with as many healthcare professionals as possible and let’s make things better… The NHS employs 1.7 million people. The majority of these people will interact with patients on some level. Let’s see how many pledges we can get!

Here is mine to get us started:

“Hello. My name is Dr Kate Granger. I’m one of the senior doctors who will be looking after you on the ward while you’re with us. How are you feeling today?”


So, come on everybody. It’s not that difficult. Not only is it our professional responsibility to introduce ourselves to our patients, I believe it is simply the right thing to do. If you don’t do it already, then PLEASE START TODAY! This is how I intoduce myself:

“Hello. My name is Ben. I’m one of the radiographers and I’ll be taking your X-rays today if that’s alright?”