NSLHD Year in Review 2019

Winter WATCH – watching out for patients and each other

Hornsby Ku-ring-gai Hospital staff are supporting winter watch

Hornsby Ku-ring-gai Hospital went back to basics this winter to improve patient safety during the busy period.

The new initiative targeted allied health, nursing and midwifery, and medical teams to focus on key activities that address safety and patient care which go towards reducing infection, preventing falls within the hospital, improving communication and delivering quality patient care. General Manager Lee Gregory said the hospital was undertaking a refresh of its quality and safety program during winter 2019 with the “back to basics” program entitled Winter WATCH. “The aim of Winter WATCH is to improve the delivery of safe, quality healthcare during the winter period where increased demand and risk of adverse events is higher than normal,” he said.

“During the winter WATCH program our medical, nursing and allied health staff will focus on some key activities including improved communication and interdisciplinary team work to enhance safe, quality patient centred care. Clinicians will be supported by corporate services and clinical governance to ensure a whole of hospital approach to this program.” Posters targeting the WATCH aspects for each discipline have been placed around key areas of the hospital to remind staff of what they need to, such as `wash hands’, `assess risk’ and `check catheters and cannulas’. Each year the hospital places an emphasis on winter preparedness given the increase in patient presentations.

Lee said he hoped among the many benefits of Winter WATCH there would be a reduction in adverse outcomes, decreased number of hospital-acquired infections, improved handovers, and improved communication with patients and carers regarding their care. “Winter WATCH is a simple message that says to our staff and to our patients, that our nursing, allied health and medical teams are working together to deliver high quality and safe patient care,” he said. “It also reminds our hard working

teams of some of the basic activities that can sometimes get overlooked.”


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