Two members of staff from the University of East Anglia (UEA) Faculty of Health awarded Fellowships with the ‘NHS Improvement Faculty’.
Two members of staff from the University of East Anglia (UEA) Faculty of Health have recently been awarded Fellowships with the ‘NHS Improvement Faculty’. Jon Larner, undergraduate course director for physiotherapy
in the School of Allied Health Professions and Julie Collier, Faculty of Health Business Development Manager joined the Improvement Faculty in the autumn of 2010.
The Improvement Faculty aims to advance the progress of patient safety and quality of care. It works to educate and influence healthcare professionals by building a network to encourage the sharing of ideas, best practise and peer support. Jon and Julie’s commitment to sharing best practice is illustrated by their leading role in the development of an initiative with physiotherapy, occupational therapy and speech and language therapy students at the UEA to encourage service improvement ideas whilst on placement.
The initiative, which Jon and Julie established with colleague Jill Jepson, involves first teaching the students basic improvement methodology and then encouraging them to identifying simple areas for improvement whilst out on clinical placement. These ideas may lead to real improvements in the quality of the patient experience, however at the very least the initiative helps the students to think imaginatively about improving service delivery. It has been welcomed by health providers who value the students’ ideas, but also the opportunity to map out some of the key processes that underpin their daily practice. The ideas can range from the most modest change in routine, such as providing information for patients about the day room facilities on a ward, to more complex processes such as the way important information is documented or communicated to the team.
Jon Larner said, “I am delighted to have been awarded the fellowship. Empowering students to get involved in process mapping a real clinical situation allows them to see for themselves where simple improvements can be made. When students can see that they are able to make a real difference this is hugely rewarding. Our initiative has been very popular and demonstrates our practical approach to teaching. It’s meant that students have a ‘hands-on’ opportunity for active engagement in service re-design rather than being a ‘passive’ learner. The students like it because they feel empowered and valued, and clinicians like it because it provides a bank of new ideas and best practice to improve service.”