Hospital trust stroke service turnaround from D to A rating shortlisted for national award.

The Stroke service at Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust has been shortlisted in the 2020 HSJ Patient Safety Awards – in recognition for its transformation from being D rated to the highest possible A rating.

Improvements such as changing stoke consultants’ working patterns to match demand; involving the entire team in improvements to give them ownership; and introducing a virtual ward, allowing patients where appropriate to receive care and support in their own homes, led the transformation.

This has meant quicker decision-making for stroke patients, leading to better outcomes, a reduced stay in hospital by almost four days, increased bed availability on the stroke unit, and a reduced mortality (death) rate by 25 per cent, thanks to safer care and a quicker availability of blood clot-busting drugs.

Devesh Sinha, co-clinical lead for stroke at the Trust, said: ““We’re now providing a more reliable, faster and consistent service for our patients and I’m so proud of the entire team that our hard work to improve stroke care has been recognised by being shortlisted for this prestigious award.

“Across two years we made over 40 changes to improve our service, among the most important, was creating a culture of constant improvement by encouraging everyone to innovate. We have daily huddles where every staff member can give an idea to help us improve – this is great for our team as they feel empowered. It has also helped us to recruit and retain the best people, and most importantly, we’ve made sustainable changes so we can ensure we continue to provide a high standard of care to all stroke patients.”

Changes were made using the Trust’s quality improvement method, The PRIDE Way, which was introduced following its partnership with the Virginia Mason Institute in Seattle.

The Trust also recently introduced a seven-day mechanical thrombectomy service – a procedure used to treat acute stroke patients by removing blood clots from the brain. This was made possible thanks to the recruitment of additional staff to the Neuro-Interventional Radiology team, which carries out the procedure.

The Stoke team was shortlisted, in the Quality Improvement Initiative of the Year category, against tough competition from hundreds of applicants. The full list of nominees can be found here

Winners will be selected ahead of the awards ceremony, which will take place virtually as part of the Patient Safety Virtual Congress and Awards this November.

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