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29 July 2016
The care provided to ambulance patients before they go to hospital is showing ‘continuous improvement’, according to the latest national audit figures.
Staff and volunteers at the East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust (EEAST) have been credited with helping the service get within the top three nationally for patient clinical care bundle targets for elderly patients who have fallen, people with asthma, and those needing 999 care because of a mental health issue.
The figures from the National Ambulance Clinical Quality Performance Group show that for the elderly falls audit, compliance in delivering the care bundle rose considerably from 23.3% in September to 69.7% in March, making EEAST the second best performing ambulance trust out of 11.
For mental health/self-harm, the compliance rose from 50.7% in October to 74.3% in April, making EEAST the first in the country, and for the asthma audit, rose from 46.3% last June 2015 to 82.4% in December, making EEAST third in the country that care bundles.
Mandatory figures are reported each month by ambulance services to the Department of Health on stroke, heart attacks and myocardial infarctions, and cardiac arrests, part of 11 national clinical performance indicators to improve the quality and safety of care rather than according to the categorisation of call alone. But seperately, the organisation signed up to the National Ambulance Clinical Performance Group to be at the cutting edge of what is nationally-accepted good practice in caring for patients in the pre-hospital setting.
The Trust's clinical team then receives the previous audit outcome each month so staff can see exactly where improvements are being made and what changes are required to continue good practice.
Clinical Audit Manager Pammi Warwick said: “Each month we collect data and submit our findings to the national group on different audit topics to evaluate, which we are then required to re-audit every six months to monitor progress.
“Over the past few months we have continually improved and we have only achieved this fantastic accolade for our improvement due to the hard, conscientious work of our dedicated staff and volunteers in providing the best care possible to our patients.”
The news comes just a month after the Trust published its 2016-17 Quality Account, a statutory document which sets out the clinical priorities for the coming year and reflects on the past 12 months. For 2016/17, the Trust is focusing on a number of areas to raise quality standards, including stroke and heart attack care, timely responses to patients, sepsis recognition, improving experience for dementia patients, and ensuring there is learning from serious incidents. Download and read a copy of the Quality Account from: http://www.eastamb.nhs.uk/about-us/current-annual-report-and-quality-account-documents.htm.
For more information on national clinical performance indicators, please visit: https://www.england.nhs.uk/statistics/statistical-work-areas/ambulance-quality-indicators/