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  • Run by University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust, in partnership with the Universities of Southampton and Sheffield, Health Education Wessex, Wessex Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care, Academic Health Sciences Network and the Sheffield Emergency Care Forum.
  • Being implemented in the emergency department and paediatric wards.
  • Aiming to engage and empower patients as partners in the delivery of better care.
  • Will involve the co-design and delivery of a patient-administered safer care. 

Areas of concern that patients report in relation to the care they receive include inadequate explanations about their diagnosis, tests, treatment or side effects; delayed or inadequate pain relief; and uncertainty about what to do if the condition worsens. These issues can mean that patients are confused, may not follow advice, experience excessive pain or anxiety, or delay seeking further health care.

A simple innovation from a team at University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust identifies problems in real-time, puts the patient at the centre of their care, and empowers them to be the agents for change and to drive lasting improvements in care.  

The project involves a patient-administered checklist (PAC) that identifies key elements of care and prompts real-time feedback about shortcomings. The PAC describes key objectives that should be met during the patient’s journey. It invites the patient (or parents/carers) to systematically observe their care and encourages feedback to their clinician about any objective that has not been met, highlighting issues that have not been addressed to their satisfaction. Clinicians and patients can then work together to address the issue.

A pilot of the PAC has been developed for ambulatory emergency department patients, focusing on problems identified by surveys, audits, complaints and litigation as areas of concern to patients and clinicians. A similar process will be followed for children admitted to the hospital wards. The team will work with patients to further develop the PAC, in a co-design process. 

Contact details

For more information about this project, please contact Dr Michael Clancy, Consultant Emergency Physician at Southampton General Hospital.

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