Abstract: Patient experience is widely regarded as one of three pillars of quality in healthcare, alongside patient safety and clinical effectiveness. There is an emergent evidence base that suggests organisations which perform well on patient experience also do better on a range of other measures, including safety (e.g. fewer medication errors), reducing costs and shorter lengths of stay, and improved staff experience, morale and retention. There is also good evidence on what matters to patients, including not just functional matters such as access, waiting times, food and noise, but also relational aspects of care – kindness, empathy and emotional support. However, acting on this information to improve services does not always happen, and there is a tendency to focus on measurement and data collection rather than improvement. This seminar will review the different kinds of patient experience data and what they can tell us, including surveys, interviews, observations and a range of forms of patient feedback, on and offline. It will explore how different types of data can be used for different purposes, and will focus particularly on practical quality improvement using narrative and observations, including ‘experience-based co-design’.
Biography: Louise Locock is a qualitative social scientist with research interests in the experience of health and illness, healthcare policy and organisational change. Since 2003 she has worked with the Health Experiences Research Group, University of Oxford, where she is now Director of Applied Research. She has led several studies of experiences of different health conditions disseminated on the health website healthtalk.org, and is now increasingly focused on how narrative data can be used to inform service improvement in the NHS. She currently leads an NIHR study involving case studies with six NHS trusts, to explore how frontline staff on medical wards can use patient experience data to improve care. She also has an interest in people’s experiences of medical research participation and patient and public involvement.