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Recognising excellence – and making sure it happens again

22 October 2021

In October, we’ve worked closely with HSJ and two of our NHS Trust customers to produce three inspiring pieces around continuous learning, excellence reporting and building a positive culture. Take a look at our summary below or read the full articles on HSJ. 


Embed a culture of continuous learning 

Somerset NHS Foundation Trust has shifted to a culture where excellence is explicitly reported on and valued, all underpinned by smart use of digital technology. 

The relatively newly merged organisation is working hard to embed a culture of continuous learning and improvement, without blame – and much of that is about finding out what’s going well, what makes it so good, and spreading the knowledge across the trust. 

“There are a whole spectrum of patient interactions and events that we can learn from, and if you look at just the bad, that’s only a very small percentage,” says James Coulson, consultant vascular surgeon and clinical director for patient safety with the trust. “But if you just talk about the bad ones, you miss out on 90+ per cent of all the interactions we have. So the whole system has changed to one where we need to learn from everything.” 

Read the full piece on HSJ. 


Appreciating what goes well in Milton Keynes 

Celebrating and learning from the good things that happen is becoming part of life at Milton Keynes University Hospital Foundation Trust. 

From a formalised system that rewards staff for doing a particularly good job to an “appreciative inquiry” process which aims to work out why something is going well, the trust’s culture is one where positive practice is actively sought out, learned from, then shared. 

“It’s human nature to dwell on things that don’t go well,” says Jyothi Srinivas, consultant paediatrician, one of the leads on the trust’s scheme for rewarding excellence. “It takes a lot of effort for ourselves to say ‘you know, actually I did a good job with that patient today’. But it’s easier for a colleague to say ‘I watched you, you were so good with that patient’.” 

Read the full article on HSJ. 


Shifting the focus to excellence reporting 

Paul Johnson, CEO and co-founder of Radar Healthcare advocates excellence reporting, where digital has a key role to play. 

“For too long, the NHS has been focused on what’s gone wrong and how we can learn from it. Yes, it’s important to look at untoward events and unwarranted variation. But there’s also a huge amount of learning to be had from what’s going well, and too often that gets lost. 

At Radar Healthcare we’re proud to be working with NHS organisations such as Somerset and Milton Keynes, who are doing such great work to build a culture that values and learns from excellence. We’re confident that our technology is helping them on that journey.” 

Read the complete piece on HSJ. 


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