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Healthwatch Hertfordshire (HwH) was asked by Professor Nancy Fontaine, Chief Nurse and Deputy Chief Executive of Princess Alexandra NHS Trust (PAHT), to be involved with their quality improvement activities and provide some independent feedback.
During the first week of October, Enable East was going to be conducting some mock inspections in the hospital and this provided an opportunity to combine this with HwH visits. The Trust’s Patient Panel would also be conducting visits at the same time.
What we found
Patients spoke of the good care they had received from staff at all levels and how hard they worked. When we talked to staff, it was evident how much they cared about their patients. There was a sense of pride when they could demonstrate where they had improved systems that had had a positive impact on patient care and experience.
However information for patients was inconsistent and vulnerable patients needed to be more easily identified for help at meal times e.g. use of the red tray system or similar.
We made recommendations for improvement to the Trust.
What changed as a result of our visits
- The Trust is implementing a number of programmes which address communication, leadership and quality improvement.
- The website and NHS Choices entry is being refreshed .
- A specific piece of work is taking place to audit protected mealtimes and nutrition, led by the Nutrition Steering Group..
- Healthwatch Hertfordshire has been invited to participate in the next Patient Led Assessment of the Care Environment audits.
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