Our volunteers, Wendy Patel and Sheila White, undertook a total of 43 visits to 36 wards and departments at Kettering General Hospital between April 2019 and March 2020!
They used the '15 Steps Challenge' tool, which focuses on seeing care through a patient or carer’s eyes, and exploring their first impressions.
They share their findings with the hospital after each visit, resulting in an ‘action plan’ from each ward outlining how they will address the issues raised.
This summary report highlights some of their findings and recommendations from their visits during the year as well as the changes the hospital has made in response to improve the patient and carer/relative experience.
Kettering General Hospital commented:
“Kettering General Hospital NHS Foundation Trust would like to thank Healthwatch and in particular Wendy and Sheila for their work with the 15 Step Challenge. Their observations and feedback are always well received and helps us make improvements which are monitored via action plans.
15 Step Challenge feedback compliments other feedback sources and Healthwatch have the opportunity share this with our Patient Experience and Involvement Steering Group, which they are members of, as well as being monitored by the Quality and Compliance Manager.
The 15 Step Challenge tests us in a robust and structured way that has been developed over time and highlights and test things with a fresh eyes approach.”
"Since I became Director of Nursing and Quality and indeed even before that, Wendy and Sheila provided me with invaluable insights into the experiences of patients and staff at KGH. They seemed to have possessed a continuous drive and a passion for quality improvement and both have been very active members of a number of our working groups. From their insights and contributions, some from 15 Steps, but also through other means I have remained grounded and open to hearing about and acting on the right things. I would like to extend my heartfelt thanks to them both."
What our volunteers say:
"There have been several examples of the impact made following issues we have raised at KGH but the following are two we cherish.
In relation to Infection Control one of the questions we ask patients when we audit the wards is ‘Are you offered hand washing before meals?’. When we found the answer was often no, we suggested that hand wipes were included on all meal trays. This has now been adopted across the hospital.
In relation to dignity and privacy we observed patients were being transferred on trolleys from one area to another lacking appropriate covering. We reported our concerns, and this was remedied. Visitors were also getting into the lifts with these patients. We also saw patients from the wards near the front entrance and in the coffee shop, inappropriately dressed and nothing on their feet. We discussed these issues with the Director of Nursing and Quality who expressed her concern and gave us her mobile phone number to enable us to contact her immediately when similar incidents occur.”