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Tea rounds return in boost for patients at GWH
MATRONS’ tea rounds are being brought back to wards at the Great Western Hospital in a bid to improve care for patients.
Under the new initiative, which was introduced yesterday during NHS Change Day, matrons will host tea rounds on all wards while spending a little bit of extra time with patients over a cuppa.
NHS Change Day, which aims to create a mass movement of people working in the NHS demonstrating the difference they can make by one simple act, saw the GWH focusing on hydration.
The GWH is planning to make the tea rounds a monthly occurrence and there has already been a successful trial on one of the wards.
Caroline Wretham, matron for Cardiology and Stroke, said: “Myself and a colleague completed a tea round last month on Mercury Ward. “I think first impressions of a ward are what stay with you, so it was very valuable, and gave me a useful insight into what patients are experiencing.”
Matrons will also be carrying out the 15 Steps Challenge, a toolkit designed to help them understand what quality care looks like from the patient’s perspective.
The 15 Steps Challenge was developed as part of the national Productive Ward Programme in 2012 with the aim of supporting staff to identify time wasting activities and inefficiencies that take time away from caring for patients.
“We do regular audits routinely, but this was an opportunity to check on all aspects of the patient’s care at the same time such as hydration and nutrition, and use the 15 Steps Challenge toolkit,” said Caroline.
“I found it very eye-opening, it was also useful to do it in the afternoon because we could then interact with the patient’s relatives as well. The response from patients on the ward was fantastic.
“The monthly tea round acts almost as an interim check, allowing us to see how we are doing on the ward, whether improvements we’ve made are effective, and so on. As matrons, we try to make ourselves as available as possible, and this is another way to increase our visibility, and pick up any concerns from our patients there and then.
“Although NHS Change Day is about one day, out of it we will be ensuring that the Matrons’ tea rounds are not just a one-off.
“The ward managers and other matrons are very supportive of this idea, including at our community hospitals in Wiltshire and we want to roll it out there too.”
Karen Braid, service transformation lead, said: “The 15 Steps Challenge was developed by those involved in the Productive Ward Programme and arose from a patient workshop where someone said they could tell what kind of care their relative was going to get within 15 steps of walking onto a ward.
“For NHS Change Day we wanted to do a mix of things, so the matrons tea rounds will allow us to implement the 15 Steps Challenge and continue with our campaign to raise the importance of patient hydration amongst staff and the patients themselves.”