Key points

  • This report examines the improvement capability building approaches taken by five health and social care trusts across the UK.
  • Improvement capability refers to an approach aimed at encouraging and enabling staff to develop and deploy the skills, tools and knowledge necessary to improve the quality and safety of the care they provide.
  • The report provides an insight into how and why the trusts embarked on their improvement journeys; the steps they took at each stage; the impact they achieved; and the challenges they encountered along the way.
  • These case studies, together with our report on how to achieve change in the NHS, will hopefully provide policy makers nationally and other providers locally with some of the evidence and ideas they need to create an environment which is conducive to driving and sustaining quality improvement.

This report looks at how five UK trusts built quality improvement capability at scale in their organisations.

The report provides an insight into how and why the trusts embarked on their improvement journeys, the impact they achieved and the challenges they encountered.

One trust's journey - Northern Ireland’s South Eastern Health and Social Care Trust’s Safety, Quality and Experience programme - is featured in our Power of People series of short films. The films offer a unique and moving take on how the lives of people using health services and their families can be improved through the determined efforts of people working in health care.

The report draws out some key lessons from the trusts’ improvement journeys, which will be useful for organisations that are considering building improvement capability at scale. It also provides a useful checklist of points for organisations to consider before planning, designing and delivering an improvement capability building programme.

The report makes it clear that you can’t drive and sustain improvement across an organisation unless you have a process in place to develop the improvement knowledge and skills of clinicians and managers across health and social care.

Further reading

Analysis

Constructive comfort: accelerating change in the NHS

February 2015

This report asks how best to design national policy on the NHS to accelerate improvements to health...

Evidence scan

What’s getting in the way? Barriers to improvement in the NHS

February 2015

A compilation of published research about the key barriers to improvement in the NHS.

Newsletter feature

Three essential resources to help you work collaboratively

26 July 2018

How can we work together most productively on the many complex challenges we face in health care...

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