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Sign up to safety

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Today, we are signing up to safety! You may be wondering what that statement actually means. Well, with a million people using healthcare services every 36 hours, providing and receiving healthcare is complicated stuff. The vast majority of patients receive safe and high quality care, but things do go wrong and mistakes are made. Sign up to Safety is a new national patient safety campaign that aims to strengthen patient safety in the NHS and make it the safest healthcare system in the world. The ambition is to halve avoidable harm in the NHS over the next three years - saving 6,000 lives as a result.

As a Trust, we have submitted our declaration which sets out the actions we will undertake to meet the five Sign up to Safety pledges. These are: to put safety first, continually learn, honesty, collaborate and support.

Patient safety priorities are identified in different ways. National claims and incident data have been used to compile a national ‘Safety Wall’ of high priority issues, and from this we have identified two safety topics which we want to take forward for improvement. These are pressure ulcers – specifically the management and deterioration of moisture lesions and grade 2 pressure ulcers – and the deterioration of patients – specifically those who develop sepsis. Working with clinical staff and our data analysts, we are starting to draft our safety improvement plans for these areas.

The Sign up to Safety initiative also encourages us to use our local incident and claims information to identify local safety priorities. This work is underway but we need your help. Listening and learning from staff experience is key to building up a picture of the patient safety concerns within the Trust, so that we can act upon them. To help this, we have set up an email address for staff to contact us. Please think about what patient safety issues are happening in your area and let us know by emailing us on: coc-tr.COCHSignuptoSafety@nhs.net

You may also want to make an individual pledge to Sign up to Safety via the websitewww.england.nhs.uk/signuptosafety/ and we will be displaying some of pledges made by our staff on our Safety Pledge Wall.

Please contact Ruth Millward, Head of Risk & Patient Safety, for further information.

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About the Author

Tony image

Chief Executive of Countess of Chester NHS Foundation Trust.

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