18 June 2018

Developing a culture of improvement

The challenge

Improvement has never been more important for the health and social care. Vanguards, New Care Models and the Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs) are focusing on improving care for individuals, organisations and populations, focusing on removing the barriers between primary care and hospitals, between physical and mental health and between health and social care.  Improvement and leadership capability is integral to their success and sustainability.

Facing the challenge

One of UCLPartners’ key aims is to find, support and empower people with the drive and talent to be improvement leaders within organisations and professional communities.  Through activities in our Network Development and our Training and Development work, we build skills and connect people with shared interests and needs beyond traditional institutional boundaries.  When connected and appropriately supported, each partner organisation is able to achieve better results for patients and achieve greater satisfaction through the work they do.

Our training sessions are designed to empower individuals and organisations to work collaboratively to improve patient outcomes. We do this by supporting staff within the partnership to increase their improvement capability with basic skills and knowledge of quality improvement.

Through our Improvement Network, we are supporting individuals at different stages in their improvement journey, who are all passionate about improving care for patients. Our newest initiative is our Aspiring Improvers Programme, which launched in 2017.  This programme aims to develop a peer support network for people who are new to quality improvement, helping them to build the skills and the connections that they will need to succeed. The programme activities, which include QI training and workshops, provide the opportunity to network and build a community of people to turn to for inspiration, support and expertise that go beyond current local and professional networks and endure over time, beyond the formal programme. As part of the programme, the participants design and deliver an improvement project in their organisation and are mentored and supported by a UCLPartners Improvement Fellow. This initiative will help make those involved become visible and effective and further support development and improvement capability.

Thank you to everyone involved in the fantastic Intro to QI day at 170 Tottenham court road. This was an extremely well organised and facilitated event. Excellent content, excellent teaching, great pace, interactive and inclusive. Introduction to Quality Improvement Participant 2018

Progress highlights

  • Our QI improvement training programme consists of Quality Improvement training, Human Factors Training, Measurement for Improvement, and QI clinic.
  • This year, we trained 459 people in Quality Improvement, 272 people in Human Factors awareness, 97 people in Advanced Measurement for Improvement and 80 people in Appreciative Inquiry.
  • Launched a 12-month Human Factors programme to support partners to develop in-house expertise.
  • In 2017 we recruited 28 new Improvement Fellows, 88 new Q members and 12 participants to the pilot Aspiring Improvers cohort. Our Improvement Network has members from partner organisations across the whole UCLPartners region.
  • We are seeing evidence of increased cross-organisational working, bringing together Improvement Fellows and Q members.

Impact

Key learning from our network development work has shown us:

  • A large, diverse, multi-professional group maximises opportunities for sharing learning across boundaries
  • Informal networking is important and, as well as more structured discussion around session themes, should have dedicated time, as this supports the lasting impact of the network
  • Selecting individuals on their passion and motivation for improvement has more lasting value for a growing network than selecting on experience and expertise alone
  • Participants with strong organisational support get more out of the activities and share more with their organisation.
I have found the UCLPartners Improvement Fellows Programme inspiring and enabling. The peer support network and topics of the learning sessions have improved my resilience and problem-solving abilities and I have met lots of interesting and inspiring people who have provided great advice and given me new ideas on how to approach things.UCLPartners Improvement Fellow 2017