Harnessing data analytics to maximise NHS learning from patient safety incident reports

Cardiff and Vale University Health Board

This project will run from September 2019 to December 2020.

  • Run by Cardiff and Vale University Health Board, in partnership with the Division of Population Medicine, Cardiff University and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.
  • Working to realise the synergy between data analysts, managers and clinicians for identifying and acting on learning from patient safety data.
  • Will develop and test analytical strategies in the child health directorate to inform the design of quality improvement projects led by paediatric trainees.

Patient safety is predicated on understanding why errors occur and using the learning to redesign care. Patient safety incident reporting systems can support the identification of systematic weaknesses that can be targeted for improving patient safety.

However, a lack of demonstrable progress in terms of quality improvement (QI) can deter staff from reporting incidents. It can also be challenging for managers and clinicians to access patient safety data and know how to use the data to inform their QI activities.

This project by Cardiff and Vale University Health Board will involve working with the PatIent SAfety research group (PISA) at Cardiff University to develop methods to enable NHS organisations to learn from patient safety incident data and develop data-driven QI agendas.

A team of analysts from the Health Board, alongside clinicians from the child health directorate, will work with the PISA group to develop and test an analytical plan to generate learning from patient safety incidents reports.

Patient safety team members and clinicians will be trained on how to use the PISA group’s approach for analysis of patient safety incident report data, using a combination of workshops and e-learning courses.

An analytical strategy will be developed and tested in the child heath directorate. The outputs will support the identification of priority areas for patient safety improvement, and the planning of QI projects.

The team plans to develop a ‘how to’ guide, summarising the concepts, challenges and resources required to introduce the new analytical approach – allowing other organisations to adopt the approach, if successful.

Contact information

For more information about this project, please contact Andrew Carson-Stevens, Clinical Reader of Patient Safety and Quality Improvement, Division of Population Medicine, Cardiff University. 

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