15 March 2017

Quality improvement leads to good rating for Newham GP practice

After embarking on a Quality Improvement (QI) fellowship supported by the Newham Partnership Programme, Dr Nazmul Hussain has led his team to effectively identify and tackle a number of barriers to delivering high quality care. One year after the practice was deemed to ‘require improvement’ by the CQC, a further inspection has rated the surgery as ‘good’ and described it’s leadership as ‘outstanding’.

Wordsworth health centre teamIn November 2015 Wordsworth Health Centre was criticised by the Care Quality Commission for an ineffective appointments system, delays in responding to patient complaints and inadequate protocols for the management and storage of vaccines.

Determined to improve working practices in the health centre, Dr Hussain enrolled on the Newham Partnership Programme QI Fellowship led by Newham CCG in partnership with UCLPartners, an opportunity he attributes much of the health centre’s turnaround to.

Putting his training into practice, Dr Nazmul Hussain led staff at the health centre to tackle the issues identified by the CQC and the efforts of Nazmul and his team have not gone unnoticed.

Inspectors returned to the surgery in November and were delighted with the changes made. In the official report, released this month, the health centre has been rated ‘good’ in nearly all areas, with leadership in the practice described as ‘outstanding’.

Dr Nazmul Hussain said: “Our practice has changed significantly in the last few months. Receiving a ‘requires improvement’ rating was a huge blow but we took action and haven’t looked back. We’re now embracing quality improvement methods and we’re no longer afraid of change. We’re doing things differently and its working for our staff and patients.

We’ve increased our phone line capacity, introduced a phone queueing system and publicised our online appointment booking services. We’re vigilant when storing vaccines and effective protocols are now in place to ensure our centre is as safe as it can possibly be”

The CQC has praised the Wordsworth team for their clear focus on improving quality of care and patient experiences in the centre. Describing observations during their recent inspection the independent regulator for health services in England stated: “The practice had a clear vision with quality and safety as its top priority”

Professor Martin Marshall who leads the UCLPartners development programme that supported Dr Hussain said: “The turnaround of the Wordsworth Health Centre is a great example of how encouraging leadership skills amongst NHS staff can lead to significant improvements in patient experience and care. The 2015 inspection report was a shock for the team but they have really come together to improve practice. We’re so proud to have played a part in this success story which demonstrates the talent that exists on the front line of the NHS”

Following the success of the QI fellowships, the Newham Partnership Programme are now rolling out more QI training opportunities for primary care staff in the borough which will form part of an overarching Quality Improvement Academy.