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Previous Seminars

“FROM ‘BODIES ON THE PAVEMENT’ TO THE PARTICIPATORY ZEITGEIST: SHAPING CHANGE IN HEALTHCARE ORGANISATIONS”, Glenn Robert Professor of Health Care Quality & Innovation, King’s College London, 23 January 2020

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Abstract: This talk will critically explore the current trend towards more participatory methods for bringing about change within (and outside) healthcare organisations, and the resulting opportunities and challenges that arise for applied (and not so applied) qualitative health researchers. By revisiting the radical origins of such methods the talk will provide an opportunity to consider how they relate to more recent constructs such as Patient & Public Involvement. The potential for combining both imagination and rigour in qualitative research which might contribute to beneficial change in the organisation of healthcare service delivery will be discussed..

Biography: My research at King’s College London draws on the fields of organisational studies and organisational sociology. It incorporates the study of innovations in the organisation and delivery of health care services as well as quality improvement interventions. My current research interests include collaborating with service designers to identify and test any creative and participatory methods that might have value in addressing some of the challenges facing the NHS. Through a part-time Chair at Jönköping University, Sweden I am also collaborating on a long-term research programme which is seeking to explore, enhance and measure the value of co-production for improving the health and social care of citizens.


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Abstract: This is a very personal, thought-provoking and heart-warming session that will leave you inspired, reflective and overall in awe of such an amazing individual that we were blessed to have as part of healthcare.

My inspiring wife Dr Kate Granger MBE along with myself came up with a social media campaign that has gone on to revolutionise patient care across global healthcare. This session will take you on the journey from the conception of #hellomynameis to how it now fits within healthcare and how Kate’s legacy continues through the work I do and the numerous accolades named after her.

Biography: Hello, my name is Chris Pointon and I am the husband of the late Dr Kate Granger MBE who was a doctor and patient. My wife died in 2016 aged just 34 after 5 years living with a terminal cancer diagnosis. Throughout that time we raised over £250,000 for charity (now at £380,000) and changed global healthcare through a simple campaign we started in 2013 entitled #hellomynameis. Following Kate’s death I continue to promote the campaign through talking at various conferences across the globe and worldwide awareness on social media.

I don’t officially work in healthcare myself and have spent my career of 26 years within retail and logistics with the last 17 years in the home office of a major global retailer. I recently finished a 12 month sabbatical from my career travelling the world raising awareness of the campaign and promoting compassionate care in healthcare and beyond, along with raising vast amounts of money for charity.

Presentation slides available here

HEALTH STATES OF EXCEPTION: THE (INADVERTENT) PRODUCTION OF ‘BARE LIFE’ IN COMPLEX CARE TRANSITIONS: Justin Waring Professor in Organisational Sociology at Nottingham University Business School, 9 May 2019

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Abstract: A growing number of reports and research studies show that people discharged from hospital often experience a sense of abandonment and stigmatisation, and that they all too often receive delayed, inappropriate or unsafe care. In many ways it can seem that these people are seen as less important or valuable to the care system. This paper draws upon the work of Giorgio Agamben to understand how the social organisation of care transitions can reduce people to their ‘bare’ life thereby making possible harmful and degrading treatment. The concept of ‘bare’ life is derived from classical Greek and Roman law, and describes a ‘life’ that is deprived or stripped of the safeguards and protections that are usually accorded to citizens in the form of a ‘qualified’ life.

The findings of a two-year ethnographic study are analysed to show how some people experience hospital discharge as a vulnerable, inhumane and unsafe process, as found in their lack of involvement in care planning, delayed discharge from hospital and inappropriate and unsafe follow-on care. This is shown to stem from the way patients are constituted as ‘unknown’ and ‘ineligible’ and, in turn, professionals become ‘not responsible’ for care during and after the discharge processes. The social production of ‘bare life’ is found to be an inadvertent feature of patients ‘falling between gaps’ of different professional practices and cultures within a complex care system.

Biography: I completed my doctorate in Sociology at the University of Nottingham (2004) on ‘The social construction and control of medical errors’. I am now Professor in Organisational Sociology at Nottingham University Business School. In 2013, I founded the Centre for Health Innovation, Leadership & Learning (CHILL), which leads the Business School’s research on health systems improvement, and in the same year was awarded a Health Foundation Improvement Science Fellowship to undertake research on major system change. I am currently Associate Dean for Research within the Business School, and also the Lead for the ‘Implementing Evidence and Improvement’ Theme for NIHR CLAHRC East Midlands, and the Lead for the ‘Safer Care Systems and Transitions’ Theme for the NIHR Greater Manchester Patient Safety Translational Research Centre.

Presentation slides available here.


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Abstract: Patient safety has established itself as a multidisciplinary research arena for over 2 decades. During this time, a number of high profile safety-improvement interventions have been developed and evaluated, with some showing very promising results in scientific trials and other studies. Yet, descriptive evidence and anecdotal accounts from the frontline of healthcare delivery suggest that some of these interventions have struggled to gain adequate traction within routine health services – such that their expected positive impact on patient outcomes has not always been consistent.

In this seminar I will explore some of the above barriers, with specific examples from acute healthcare. I will offer an overview of the basic tenets of implementation science and reflect on their application within the current evidence base for patient safety. I will conclude the seminar with a call for reflection and debate with the audience regarding the need for further patient safety studies that evaluate clinical effectiveness, compared to studies that focus on implementation effectiveness instead – arguing that the latter are now more timely than ever.

Biography: A psychologist by training, Nick is Director of the Centre for Implementation Science at King’s College London, Academic Director of the Quality Improvement and Implementation Science Clinical Academic Group within King’s Health Partners, Chief Editor of BMJ Simulation and Technology Enhanced Learning and Associate Editor of Implementation Science. His research is situated at the interface of patient safety, improvement and implementation sciences. For the past 15 years, Nick has been studying perioperative and cancer pathways, aiming to address human factors in care delivery; to understand barriers and drivers of implementing and sustaining evidence-based improvement interventions; and to increase capacity to undertake safety and quality improvement at the frontline of healthcare delivery. His research has been disseminated in over 300 publications and chapters to-date.

Presentation slides available here


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Abstract: Improving patient safety in healthcare settings is a major concern globally. Medicines are the most commonly used clinical intervention in healthcare, and errors involving the prescribing, dispensing, administration and monitoring steps of medication use are common. Such medication errors can prolong hospital stay and lead to significant patient morbidity. Given this, the World Health Organisation has recently identified ‘Medication Without Harm’ as the priority for their third Global Patient Safety Challenge which aims to reduce severe avoidable medication-related harm by 50% globally in the next 5 years.  In primary care settings, we have been working to address these challenges focused on reducing hazardous prescribing as part of the work programme within the NIHR Greater Manchester Patient Safety Translational Research Centre (PSTRC). The seminar will focus on the interventional studies underway, lessons learnt and plans for the future.

Biography: Darren holds the Foundation Professorship in Pharmacoepidemiology and is Head of the Drug Usage and Pharmacy Practice Group at the University of Manchester. He is the Deputy Director of the NIHR Greater Manchester PSTRC, in which he also leads the medication safety research theme. He is also a member of the Pharmacovigilance Expert Advisory Group (PEAG) at the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).

As a pharmacist and pharmaco-epidemiologist, his major research interests and teaching include: methods to improve the appropriateness and safety of drug prescribing and drug taking, and quantification of the risks and benefits of drug therapies. He has led extensive research programmes focused on patient safety in a wide range of healthcare settings (hospitals, general practices, and pharmacies), with particular expertise in understanding and improving medication safety.

Presentation slides available here


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Abstract: Quality and safety of care remains a priority for the NHS but approximately 5% of deaths in English hospitals are preventable, and attributed to poor quality of care.  Patients who are admitted to hospital towards the end of their lives can experience inadequate decision making, poor communication and suboptimal treatment and there is the need for clinical staff to recognise as soon as possible that a person is dying and to communicate this clearly to others.  Over a two year research study in two NHS hospitals, a suite of four automated risk scores was developed that use routinely collected electronically stored data to provide clinicians with estimates of patients’ risk of death and sepsis during their stay in hospital. These scores rely on two key clinical data sources – the patients vital signs data as defined and monitored by the National Early Warning Score (NEWS) and routine blood test results.  Staff and patient involvement has been integral to the development of the scores.  In this presentation, we outline the findings of 8 focus groups involving 11 service users and carers, and 45 health care practitioners, and explain how these have contributed to an understanding of value and potential use of the scores in practice.

Biography: Dr Judith Dyson is a registered general and mental health nurse, a health psychologist and her research focuses on the use of psychological theory in supporting practitioners in implementing best practice.

Dr Claire Marsh is a research fellow in quality, safety and patient experience and also leads patient and public engagement for the Yorkshire & Humber Improvement Academy.

Presentation slides available here


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Abstract: Nursing and healthcare in the 21st century is charged with delivering high quality care within an increasingly diverse society. Much of the policy, practice and research drivers around cultural competence, diversity and nursing practice focuses on meeting the needs of patients, service users and the public – particularly following the findings of the Francis Report (2013). However, recent reports have highlighted that highlighting the need for compassionate care for patients often occurs in isolation from recognising the needs of the workforce or the nursing profession as a whole – in this regard we do ourselves a dis-service – and in the silent spaces between patient need and workforce responsibilities, we fail to acknowledge the importance of professional leadership as the catalyst to delivering the high quality, equitable and culturally competent care that we all hope for. This presentation will use personal and professional reflections to highlight the importance of culturally competent and compassionate leadership to truly achieving safety and quality in 21st century health care. It explores the challenges and opportunities faced at an individual and professional level in the UK. It looks back at nursing strategic drivers of the last 3 years in the UK and makes a case for centralising culturally competent, compassionate leadership in the light of the new strategic framework for nurses, midwives and care staff (2016)

Biography: Professor Laura Serrant OBE is Professor of Nursing in the Faculty of Health and Wellbeing at Sheffield Hallam University, one of the few black Professors of Nursing (out of 262) in the UK. She is one of the 2017 BBC Expert women, Chair of the Chief Nursing Officer for England’s BME Strategic Advisory group and a 2017 Florence Nightingale Scholar. She is an ambassador of the Mary Seacole Memorial Statue and the Equality Challenge Unit Race Equality Charter for Higher Education. Her work has been recognised with numerous awards and prizes, including Queens Nurse status and Fellowship of the Queens Nursing Institute to those who have shown leadership in community nursing. In 2014, she was named as one of the top 50 leaders in the UK by The Health Services Journal in three separate categories: Inspirational Women in Healthcare, BME Pioneers and Clinical Leader awards. The Powerlist 2018 lists her as the 8th most influential Black person in the UK. She was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list this year for services to Health Policy.

Presentation slides available here


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Abstract: Never Events are patient safety incidents that can cause harm or death and are so named because policy makers argue there is enough evidence available about how to prevent them, so they should never occur. Never events include wrong site surgery, wrong route drug administration, retained foreign objects and wrong implants. Between April-November 2017 332 Never Events occurred in hospitals in England, indicating that solutions to prevent them are not working. Although Resilient Healthcare is often described as a paradigm shift in safety management it is not clear how it can contribute to the investigation of adverse incidents. Root Cause Analysis (RCA) is currently used for the investigation of Never Events, but recent studies have found the recommendations to be of low quality. There is little incentive, time or resources for healthcare organisations to consider other approaches and little work has been done on how to use Resilient Healthcare insights to augment Safety I practices such as Root Cause Analysis. In this presentation the results of an analysis of 39 Never Events that occurred at one hospital over a two-year period will be discussed. The focus will be on the new insights and perspectives that Resilient Healthcare can offer to improve learning from Never Events. Recommendations for strengthening RCA and learning from Never Events will be discussed.

Biography: Janet Anderson is Director of the Centre for Applied Resilience in Healthcare and a Reader of Healthcare Improvement at King’s College London. She is a human factors psychologist. Her research draws on psychological and organisational theories and knowledge and is focused on designing systems to support safe human activity. She has specialist expertise in the theory and practice of organisational resilience, system modelling using cognitive work analysis, incident reporting and adverse event analysis, and inter professional teamwork. Board level processes and hospital wide systems for improving quality are an area of current research.

Presentation slides available here


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Abstract: Inquiries, academic work and expert group reports on problems in the quality of care in the NHS and other healthcare systems have identified shortcomings in ‘openness’—that is, the extent to which organisations enable concerns to be raised and disclosed freely without fear—as critical to the incubation of failings in quality and safety. In response, the NHS in England has developed policy initiatives that seek to improve openness, including a statutory duty of candour when care processes give rise to harm, the introduction of ‘Freedom to Speak Up Guardians’ to facilitate staff voice about concerns, and changes to various processes, including the way serious incidents are investigated. The evidence base for many of these changes, however, is uncertain, and their impact on the quality of care unevaluated.

This paper discusses emergent findings from an ongoing evaluation of various openness initiatives in the NHS, focusing in particular on an interview-based sub-study of senior stakeholder views on the implementation and impact of these initiatives. It highlights some of the challenges involved in achieving greater openness given past experiences and deep-rooted beliefs about the (at best ambivalent, and often negative) consequences of being open, the difficulties involved in diagnosing opacity and fostering openness, and the approaches taken by senior clinicians and managers to translating policy into practice. It relates findings to current policy and wider evidence and theory on interventions to facilitate employee voice and achieve culture change.

Biography: Graham Martin is Director of Research for THIS Institute, a new unit funded by the Health Foundation at the University of Cambridge to develop the evidence base for and impact of work to improve healthcare quality and safety, and Professor of Health Organisation and Policy in the SAPPHIRE Group, University of Leicester. His research focuses on social, organisational and professional issues in healthcare system change, with a particular focus on quality improvement work and policy initiatives to address quality, safety and risk in the NHS.


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Abstract: Improving Patient Safety in Mental Health Services presents a unique set of challenges and there continues to be limited attention paid to it. This seminar will provide an insight into key issues and priorities for future research identified by staff, service users and carers. It will provide an overview of relevant work being conducted by Mental Health Research Group, School of Healthcare, University of Leeds. Examples of current work of the group include reducing restrictive interventions (restraint, seclusion and forced medication), designing safer services through improving transitions and staffing and broadening our understanding of safety incidents in inpatient mental health services.

Biography: John is the Professor of Mental Health Nursing at the University of Leeds. He leads the Mental Health Research Group in the School of Healthcare. His research focuses on the development of safe and effective mental health services and clinical interventions across secondary mental health care. He is a health services researcher who has used a variety of methods from qualitative studies to complex trials and has generated substantial research income via the NIHR including RfPB, HSDR, Programme Grants and charities such as the Health Foundation. The good practice manuals which he developed have been evaluated, cited as examples of good practice, and influenced clinical practice in the UK and abroad. The training package for patients, service users and carers to promote research awareness and understanding has been cited as an exemplar of good practice. He is also a non-executive director at Leeds and York Partnership NHS Foundation Trust.