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Manchester Hospital showcases its Productive Ward successes on a global scale

Central Manchester and Manchester Children’s University Hospitals NHS Trust yesterday played host to 20 Canadian and New Zealand clinical staff as part of the Releasing Time to Care Productive Ward programme. The productive approach to hospital ward management has been developed by the NHS Institute with support from a number of acute trusts across England. The result is a series of learning modules that empower ward staff to review and improve their care processes such as meal and medicine rounds, admission and discharge arrangements, and patient observations. The 20 visiting staff, including nurse managers, doctors and nurse leaders, took part in a one-day event which included visiting wards, talking to staff and listening to those who have helped to introduce the programme. Gill Heaton, Director of Patient Services/Chief Nurse for the Trust said: “For this Trust, it’s not about productivity and cost saving, it is about efficiency in releasing time to care. This is about nurses being able to deliver a better standard of care to their patients.” For the organisation, this has been a 16 month journey and after starting on four wards, they now have 23 areas on the programme. They work on a 12-week roll out process covering six to eight areas each time. They aim to have all 82 wards and departments using the programme by June 2010. Dawn Pike, Assistant Director of Nursing, who helped the NHS Institute to organise the day said: “This is a programme, not a project – it’s here to stay.” So far, the impact that the programme has had is very evident. They have seen Registered Nurse Direct patient care time increased by 8% which translates to 57 minutes in every 12 hour shift. They have seen a reduction in food wastage and improvement in patient satisfaction in relation to food and pain management. The rationalisation of pharmacy stock in clinical areas has also improved with one area alone returning £300 of stock to pharmacy. The purpose of the day was to share with them the Trust’s experiences and for them to see first hand the impact of implementing the programme. Carole Bartley, Ward Sister at Manchester Royal Infirmary said: “When we started the programme, we had very low staff morale. Now that the programme has been introduced, morale has gone straight up. Staff are coming into work happier and more relaxed because they know they can now spend that extra time with the patients, listening to their concerns and having the time to provide the necessary reassurance. They no longer feel that they have to dash off to deal with another issue. Staff have taken ownership of the ward and it’s had a massive impact on us.” The visitors have travelled thousands of miles to attend the event, but visiting Central Manchester and Manchester Children’s University Hospitals NHS Trust was viewed to be crucial to allow them to see the programme in action. Lizzie Cunningham, Clinical Facilitator for NHS Institute who developed the programme, said: “It was important for our visitors to come to Manchester in order to learn much more about the Productive Ward Programme so they can successfully implement it themselves. The Institute has managed to learn a great deal from this Trust and it’s a great site for us to show our visitors. They have an excellent senior management engagement which is imperative to support the programme. They are achieving real successes and it’s the perfect environment to showcase what the Productive Ward programme can do. “ The participants were due to attend the Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust today for the second part of their visit.