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Evaluating the feasibility and impact of implementing ward-based patient safety teams to improve patient outcomes

This project proposes to implement and evaluate the introduction of multi-disciplinary Patient Safety Teams on four wards at Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital. Led by a senior ward nurse, each Team would comprise of 4 - 5 members who have extra knowledge about patient safety and change management. Each team member would carry a portfolio of responsibility related to a defined area of patient safety. Team members would then share knowledge about their areas of patient safety responsibility with staff on their own ward, and with Team members from other wards. In this way, Patient Safety Teams could influence the care given by all staff to improve patient safety. Selected clinical indicators, which are known to be responsive to the quality of care, will be evaluated before the introduction of Patient Safety Teams and 1 year afterwards, to determine if this change has been effective. Quantitative measurement of 4 clinical indicators - patient falls, pressure ulcers, medication errors, and hand hygiene practice, will assess the impact of Patient Safety Teams on clinical outcomes and processes. In addition, qualitative exploration of the perceptions and experiences of team members and those who work with them will elucidate the value and feasibility of Patient Safety Teams in the 4 pilot wards.


Associate Professor Anne Williams
Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital, Adjunct Associate Professor Sue Davis
Professor Di Twigg
Ms Susan Slayer
Dr Gilly Smith
Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital, Ms Sandra Miller

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