NSLHD Year in Review 2020

District does the double at NSW Health Awards Northern Sydney Local Health District had twice the cause for celebration after claiming two NSW Health Awards.

“It has been a goal of the unit for a number of years to manage behavioural disturbance in a least restrictive and trauma informed manner and reduce the use of seclusion and restraint. “The feedback from people who have been admitted to the unit, when they recover, and their families has been really positive and our overall rates of acute behavioural disturbance, including injury rates to people in the unit and staff, have reduced as well.” Royal North Shore Hospital Intensive Care Staff Specialist Dr Jonathan Gatward said he was thrilled the team got to take home the award, along with its Australian Council on Healthcare Standards and Quality and Improvement awards. “It means a great deal to us to win this award,” he said. “We are so proud of this project for three reasons. Firstly, the reduction in arterial blood gases has been sustained over three years - we have not seen a slide back to our old ways of over-ordering.

The mental health intensive care unit (MHICU) at Hornsby Ku-ring- gai Hospital claimed the Excellence in the Provision of Mental Health Services Award with its project ‘Reducing Time in Seclusion in the Mental Health Intensive Care Unit’. Royal North Shore Hospital’s intensive care unit won the Patient Safety First award with the project ‘Reducing Inappropriate Arterial Blood Gas Testing in a 58-bed Quarternary ICU’. MHICU Nurse Unit Manager James Wall said the fact the competition was of such a high calibre made it all the sweeter to win. “The other nominees had terrific projects; we were just happy to be nominated in the end but it was a nice surprise to win,” he said. He paid tribute to his staff and the support the team received as part of their project, which has greatly benefitted consumers and staff alike. “It’s really rewarding for the team to see their hard work pay off,” James said.

“Second, the project was a huge team effort and shows what can be achieved by a group of clinicians who are motivated to make things better. “Thirdly, this project is about empowerment - trusting nurses and junior doctors to use their clinical judgement and common sense to make better choices around test ordering.” Both Jonathan and James said it all starts with an idea and encouraged others to turn their thoughts into action. “If you’re driven to make a change, you should go for it, no matter how small the project,” James said. Northern Sydney was lucky enough to have three finalists in the NSW Health Awards, but unfortunately Mona Vale Hospital’s Patient Led Handover Project fell just short. Chief Executive Deb Willcox said she was proud of the teams involved and looked forward to seeing the projects continue to improve the lives of patients and consumers into the future.

The winning team from RNSH

Hornsby Hospital’s award winner


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