Improvements are making our hospitals a better PLACE | Our news

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Improvements are making our hospitals a better PLACE

Patients have scored Barts Health NHS Trust top marks for cleanliness, its food services and the condition, appearance and maintenance of its hospitals.

Patients, as well as members of the public, took part across Barts Health hospital sites in the Patient-Led Assessments of the Care Environment (PLACE) - an annual, mandatory inspection led by NHS England to review the care environment.

The results not only show Barts Health as performing above the national average for cleanliness, food services and the upkeep of its hospital buildings, but show improvement has been made in every assessment category over the last year. 

Reza Miah, Estates and Facilities Patient Experience Lead at Barts Health NHS Trust, said: “I am delighted that assessors acknowledged the care taken by our staff and our partner service providers to ensure a good patient environment.

“All our patients deserve to be cared for in a clean, safe environment and our staff are also keen to provide high-quality care while knowing that their patients are comfortable.

“As a Trust, we are really encouraged by this year’s results. Not only have we scored above the national average in five categories, but we have also shown improvement in every area – with significant improvements made. This is real testament to how we use feedback to focus our efforts on improving services.”

Overall, the Trust has scored 99 per cent for cleanliness and 95 per cent for the condition, appearance and maintenance of its hospitals – both of which are above the national average.

Food
Barts Health has also been working with a new contractor, Serco, to improve the quality of its food and food services across its hospitals to help bring ratings above the national average.

The actions have proved particularly popular at St Bartholomew’s Hospital and Newham University Hospital, where ‘Food and hydration’ and ‘Ward Food’ quality ratings jumped more than 9 per cent and 7 per cent respectively.*

Dementia
Since last year’s survey, all hospitals have shown improvement in how they provide for the needs of patients with dementia. Whipps Cross Hospital scored just over 63 per cent - a huge 11 per cent improvement on its 2017 score. St Bartholomew’s Hospital and Newham University Hospital also scored significantly higher, with a 10 per cent and 7 per cent increase respectively.

The improvement in the Trust’s dementia score is testament to the work that is going on across our hospitals to ensure they are dementia friendly environments.

In May 2017, Barts Health’s Dementia and Delirium team fundraised to create a sensory garden at Newham University Hospital, where patients living with dementia, as well as their family and carers, can go to relax.

In October 2017, five of the older people’s wards at Whipps Cross Hospital were completely transformed thanks to a generous £500,000 of funding from Barts Charity. In February, a £30,000 project grant from Barts Charity also enabled day rooms on the older people’s wards at The Royal London Hospital to be transformed into uplifting sensory café and garden spaces, specially designed to meet the needs of individuals living with the dementia.

Disability
Each hospital also improved on its 2017 score in the ‘Disability’ category, reflecting the Trust’s ongoing commitment to improving the hospital experience for patients, visitors and staff with a disability. Scoring 71 per cent, Whipps Cross Hospital showed the largest improvement (11 per cent) over the last year. St Bartholomew’s Hospital and Newham University Hospital also improved by around 7 per cent.  

The Trust’s commitment to improving how it cares for individuals with disabilities is also evident through its Diversity and Inclusion Positive Action Charter and ‘BartsAbility Passport’. Launched last year, they demonstrate the Trust’s commitment to equality and diversity and help staff and managers to discuss support needs.

Privacy, Dignity and Wellbeing
Newham University Hospital has significantly improved its score for ‘Privacy, Dignity and Wellbeing’ this year, which focuses more on the patient experience. Having scored just above 70 per cent in 2017, the hospital scored over 81.55 per cent this year – a significant improvement.

Barts Health NHS Trust is keen for more of its local communities to get involved in improving health services. Patients, carers and family members are invited to volunteer to become a PLACE assessor. Please contact Reza Miah, Estates and Facilities Patient Experience Lead at Barts Health NHS Trust, on 0207 480 4735 or email: Reza.Miah@bartshealth.nhs.uk

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