A research team in IHS, funded by NIHR, has been working extensively with patients, relatives and healthcare staff to develop ThinkSAFE, a user-informed approach to improve the safety of patients in hospital. ThinkSAFE is a free to use service that aims to help patients and family feel more involved in their care and to ensure that their concerns are listened to and their needs are met. ThinkSAFE resources include an evidence and theory-based patient safety video; a patient-held logbook that incorporates a ‘toolkit’ of checklists and question prompts (available in both booklet and mobile App formats); a series of interactional sessions known as “talk time” at key time points throughout the in-patient pathway to flag up any concerns and questions; and an educational session for staff underpinned by behaviour change theory.
With further funds from the Academic Health Science Network North East & North Cumbria Patient Safety Collaborative, Dr Susan Hrisos and Prof Richard Thomson have developed, in collaboration with five regional NHS Foundation Trusts, an implementation package for ThinkSAFE that includes a step-by-step manual and training materials. ThinkSAFE resources are now freely available to patients and healthcare organisations via a dedicated website: www.thinksafe.care.
New funding to extend into Primary Care setting
Dr Susan Hrisos and Prof Richard Thomson have recently been awarded NIHR School of Primary Care Research funding to extend ThinkSAFE to the primary care setting which is great news. This will be a 12month project, beginning in July 2016, during which time the team will work with staff and patients from GP practices in Newcastle to adapt the ThinkSAFE resources and approach to the primary care setting. The project will be supported by Dr Anu Vaittinen, Research Associate, Institute of Health & Society, Newcastle University.
Embedding ThinkSAFE nationally
A recent significant development is the endorsement of ThinkSAFE by the national NHS England Sign up to Safety Campaign. This, along with inclusion of ThinkSAFE as a project case study http://ahsn-nenc.org.uk/project/64/ in the national Patient Safety Collaborative’s final report to the DoH will certainly raise the profile of this important work nationally. The next challenge is to secure continuation funding from ASHN to support the development of a sustainability model for Think SAFE.
For more information please contact Susan Hrisos directly.
published on: 31 May 2016