Back in 2012 I had the privilege of working at the NHS Institute for Innovation and improvement. I’d gone there originally on a one year secondment in 2008 thanks to the support of my then manager Bernadette Herbert @bherbert59 to work with a team addressing activity in Emergency and Urgent Care services relating to Children, Young People and families.
It was a wonderful opportunity where I learnt about the work of Don Berwick and the Institute of Healthcare improvement (lHI) and met inspiring people such as Helen Bevan @helenbevan, Lynn Maher @LynneMaher1 and Sam Hudson @Uberology (amongst others) who led the way in encouraging us to think creatively and differently to address complex challenges in healthcare. I must also give a shout out to people who said ‘yes, give it a go’, who opened doors and made things possible whilst I was there too, thanks to Charlie Kenney @KeeneyQi, Lynne Winstanley @LynneWinstanley and Tony Butterworth @cabutty.
The work on Children’s Emergency Care by Sarbjit Purewel and Dr Venkat Reddy @VenkatReddyUK led to the publication of ‘Focus on Children and Young People’s Emergency and Urgent Care https://www.rcem.ac.uk/docs/Paediatric%20EM%20Guidance/CEM7226-Focus-On-Children-Emergency–Urgent-Care-Pathways—March-2010.pdf
Further work with teams across the country including pharmacists, CCNS, GPs, A&E and paediatrics, parents and young people et al with the support and guidance of fabulous people like Christine McDermott, led to the publication of a ‘whole system guide to Emergency and Urgent Care’ https://www.rcem.ac.uk/docs/Paediatric%20EM%20Guidance/11.%20A%20Whole%20System%20Approach%20to%20Improving%20Emergency%20and%20Urgent%20Care%20for%20CYP.pdf
Reflecting on this learning, many years later the Nuffield Trust published a blog I wrote summarising the learning from this programme https://www.nuffieldtrust.org.uk/news-item/where-next-for-children-s-emergency-and-urgent-care
As part of the Emergency and Urgent Care work at the NHS Institute we engaged with schools, developing an emergency and urgent care lesson plan. The secondary school lesson plan has since been updated by @NHSEngland as part of the NHS 70th Birthday celebrations and can be accessed here https://www.england.nhs.uk/participation/learning/schools-resources/
The work with primary schools resulted in the creation of the Monkey Wellbeing @MonkeyWellbeing Primary School Lesson Plan pack, with the amazing Helen Sadler. We sent out a copy to every primary school across England to get them talking about appropriate use of NHS Services https://www.monkeywellbeing.com/resources/schools-resources/ This work was externally evaluated to identify its impact https://www.monkeywellbeing.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/nhs-institute-report-final.pdf
It’s joyful to see the passion of Bev Matthews, @BevMatthews_ of the horizons team and Ruth May, @RmayNurDir our new CNO as they engage with children and young people in schools encouraging them to think about future careers in the NHS. I think the new unisex children’s uniforms are fabulous! We certainly loved engaging with children in schools in the emergency and urgent care work, it brought so many new insights.
As a result of the primary school work we applied to be recognised by the Patient Experience Network at their National Patient Experience Awards event #PENNA. This must have been back in 2012 and whilst sadly we didn’t win an award that year, it did give me a taste of what celebrating great staff who do amazing things day in day out could look and feel like. Importantly I saw first hand the impact of generating enthusiasm in teams to keep improving things for and with people by valuing and recognising the work what people were doing.
I’ve gone back every year since to the #PENNA Awards, always held in Birmingham (middle of the country so accessible for all) and headed up by Ruth Evans @PEN_NEWS now Ruth Evans MBE (huge congratulations so deserved, she sadly isn’t my sister!) and the fabulous Louise Blunt, they are quite a double act!
If you haven’t been to a #PENNA award day – take a look at the short video summaries they’ve created, you can see Jane Cummings @janemcummings our previous CNO in action, along with a lovely memorial to Adam Bojelian @4Adsthepoet in 2016 too http://patientexperiencenetwork.org/awards/
So Wednesday this week took me back to Birmingham to celebrate staff delivering amazing patient experiences every day to patients and the families/carers at this years #PENNA Awards. It’s always energising and totally inspiring.
People like Lesley Goodburn @lgoodbu who works tirelessly to raise awareness of Pancreatic Cancer https://purplerainbow.co.uk/ which sadly took her husband Seth (#SethsLegacy) in an untimely manner is an annual attendee. As is Lee an amazing colleague (who has taught me so much about complaint policy and process in the NHS over the years) who is another key attendee as chief musical director, follow his insights on music at @backstreetjoe.
Fabulous Clare Enston @clareenston of NHS England who leads the insight work spoke about what patients tell us matters most to them, is was great to here her focusing on Children and Young People this year.
It was also a joy to meet in person a long standing friend from twitter Richard Littledale @richardlittleda and his son Jonathan. Sadly his wife Fiona died last year, they have established ‘The Fiona Fund’ @TheFionaFund in her memory to support healthcare professionals who are committed to improving cancer care https://thefionafund.wixsite.com/thefionafund
Do take a look at the amazing twitter activity that took place at #PENNA, it was an great day and we were trending too! I’m hoping @SaraTurle will publish her opening address from a patient and collaborator to #teamNHS it was outstanding!
As if my Wednesday couldn’t get any better I hopped on a train back to London to spend the evening with the @CavellTrust team at the HSJ Value Awards. The Cavell Trust support Nurses and Midwives experiencing hardship. It’s a charity close to my heart as I’ve seen so many colleagues struggle at times, Cavell is a lifeline to many. Whilst the Cavell Trust didn’t ‘win’ we know they are winners day in day out to the nurses and midwives who face difficult circumstances and need somewhere to turn to. Let’s ensure we’re #HereforNurses
So reflections on this week include immense gratitude to those who inspire us our way, who inspires you? Lets make sure we celebrate them …