Learning from Excellence in the ED

learning from excellence
Dr Alison Wright (centre right) with colleagues in the Emergency Department

NHS Tayside’s Emergency Departments are celebrating ‘100 Stories of Excellence’ after launching a project to share learning through episodes of good practice.

In January last year the Emergency Departments, like the rest of the hospital, were feeling the effects from the winter pressures.  There was also a need identified through the team’s iMatter report to increase the feeling of appreciation for all grades of staff.

Using the ‘Learning from Excellence’ philosophy, which is built on the idea that we can learn as much from what goes well as we can from what goes wrong, the Emergency Departments developed a simple peer-reporting system for capturing episode of excellence, including ‘everyday excellence’.

This system aims to improve quality of care, through identification and amplification of strengths and to improve staff morale through appreciation and positive feedback. If staff see great care, brilliant teamwork, someone going the extra mile or anything they think is excellent, they simply fill in a form and post it in the white box in staff base in Ninewells or PRI.

What happens next?

The team thank the nominator and inform and thank those nominated for doing an awesome job. The individual’s supervisor is also informed and the team then share the learning anonymously through newsletters and on a noticeboard.

And the feedback?     

“Thank you so much, that has made my week”

“Thanks so much, that’s a lovely gesture and much appreciated”

“That’s the nicest feedback I have ever had in my 14 year medical ​career”

“Nice to be recognised”

Consultant in Emergency Medicine Dr Alison White said, “We have learned new skills such as a new way to secure a Thomas splint for a fractured femur, and all about the major haemorrhage protocol. More importantly we have learned about the behaviours others value in us, and what we look like when we are at our best.

“In December 2018 we received the 100th excellence report and produced a book of ‘100 Stories of Excellence’ to share. A link to this can be found on the ED Staffnet page.

“The idea has spread and excellence reporting now takes place in AMU, maternity and general theatres, ICU and the human genetics unit.

​“If you would like more information, or are thinking about starting a similar project in your department, then please get in touch at lfe.tayside@nhs.net. We are happy to share our experiences and resources.”

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