• Barriers to achieving care at home at the end of life: transferring patients between care settings using patient transport services

      Ingleton, C.; Payne, S.; Sargeant, Anita R.; Seymour, J. (2009)
      Enabling patients to be cared for in their preferred location often involves journeys between care settings. The challenge of ensuring journeys are timely and safe emerged as an important issue in an evaluation of palliative care services, which informed a service redesign programme in three areas of the United Kingdom by the Marie Curie Cancer Care 'Delivering Choice Programme'. This article explores perceptions of service users and key stakeholders of palliative care services about problems encountered in journeys between care settings during end-of-life care. This article draws on data from interviews with stakeholders (n = 44), patients (n = 16), carers (n = 19) and bereaved carers (n = 20); and focus groups (n = 9) with specialist nurses. Data were gathered in three areas of the United Kingdom. Data were analysed using a framework approach. Transport problems between care settings emerged as a key theme. Four particular problems were identified: (1) urgent need for transport due to patients' rapidly changing condition; (2) limited time to organise transfers; (3) the management of specialist equipment and (4) the need to clarify the resuscitation status of patients. Partnership working between Ambulance Services and secondary care is required to develop joint protocols of care to ensure timely and safe transportation between care settings of patients, who are near their end of life. Commissioning of services should be responsive to the complexities of patients' needs and those of their families.
    • Training and action for patient safety: embedding interprofessional education for patient safety within an improvement methodology

      Slater, B.L.; Lawton, R.; Armitage, Gerry R.; Bibby, J.; Wright, J. (2012)
      INTRODUCTION: Despite an explosion of interest in improving safety and reducing error in health care, one important aspect of patient safety that has received little attention is a systematic approach to education and training for the whole health care workforce. This article describes an evaluation of an innovative multiprofessional, team-based training program that embeds patient safety within quality improvement methods. METHODS: Kirkpatrick's "levels of evaluation" model was adopted to evaluate the program in health organizations across one city in the north of England. Questionnaires were used to assess reaction of participants to the program (Level 1). Improvements in patient safety knowledge and patient safety culture (Level 2) were assessed using a 12-item multiple-choice questionnaire and a culture questionnaire. Interviews and project-specific quantitative measurements were used to assess changes in professional practice and patient outcomes (Levels 3 and 4). RESULTS: All aspects of the program were positively received by participants. Few participants completed the MCQ at both time points, but those who did showed improvement in knowledge. There were some small but significant improvements in patient safety culture. Interviews revealed a number of additional benefits beyond the specific problems addressed. Most importantly, 8 of the 11 teams showed improvements in patient safety practices and/or outcomes. DISCUSSION: This program is an example of interprofessional education in practice and demonstrates that team-based learning using quality improvement methods is feasible and can be effective in improving patient safety, but requires time and space for participants. Alignment with continuing education arrangements could support mainstream adoption of this approach within organizations.