West Midlands Ambulance Service University NHS Foundation Trust (WMAS) takes a comprehensive and proactive approach to patient safety. This approach is centred around preventing errors, minimising harm, and continually improving patient care.
Here are some key components of the patient safety approach:
Priority on Patient Safety: WMAS considers patient safety a fundamental aspect of delivering high-quality care. The goal is to create a safe environment where patients are protected from avoidable harm.
Error Prevention: The Trust emphasises the prevention of errors and adverse effects associated with healthcare delivery. This involves implementing measures to identify and minimise risks to patient safety.
High-Quality Care: WMAS is committed to delivering high-quality, safe, and effective patient care. This commitment extends to both patients and employees, aiming to control risks to all individuals involved.
Reporting and Learning: The Trust emphasises the importance of reporting systems for adverse incidents and near misses. This reporting enables a structured approach to reviewing incidents and learning from them, which in turn leads to improvements in patient care and staff safety.
Duty to Report: There’s a clear directive for staff, the Patient Safety Team, and others to report and record any incidents or potential risks. This proactive reporting helps identify areas for improvement and risk mitigation.
Patient Safety Team: The Patient Safety Team plays a crucial role in reviewing, learning from, and improving incidents. Their responsibility extends to identifying and managing harm incidents, ensuring that recommendations are acted upon for ongoing improvement.
Transparency and Communication: The approach emphasises a culture of openness, where communication is honest, transparent, and occurs promptly following incidents. This approach includes apologising and explaining what happened to patients who have experienced harm due to healthcare treatment.
Partnership and Collaboration: WMAS collaborates with various groups and boards, such as the Serious Incident Review Group (SIRG), Learning Review Group (LRG), and Integrated Care Boards (ICB). This partnership approach ensures that learning is shared, discussed, and applied across the organisation.
Patient Safety Incident Response Framework (PSIRF): Preparing for the introduction of PSIRF demonstrates a commitment to staying aligned with national patient safety initiatives and continuously improving the way the WMAS responds to patient safety incidents in the future, in line with four key aims:
- To allow a more proportionate response to safety incidents.
- To allow a greater range of responses to incidents, as opposed the reliance of formal investigations.
- To improve support to, and the involvement of, affected patients, staff, and families.
- To improve existing governance and oversight procedures.
Further information can be found at www.england.nhs.uk
Clinical Strategy Monitoring: The purpose is to ensure that we deliver the highest quality of patient care by conforming to the correct standards and monitoring checks for compliance and adhere to the core principles as set by the Trusts vision and values of Excellence, Integrity, Compassion, Inclusivity and Accountability.
Continuous Improvement: The Trust’s focus on continuous improvement is evident through its commitment to learning from incidents, implementing recommendations, and evolving its practices based on lessons learned.
Overall, this patient safety approach reflects a commitment to creating a safe environment, proactive learning, transparent communication, and collaboration across different teams and groups. By placing patient safety at the forefront and integrating it into the organisation’s culture, WMAS aims to provide the best possible care while minimising risks and adverse incidents.