Aims To engage junior paediatric trainees in patient safety projects. To demonstrate that patient safety is everyone's responsibility, leading to safer paediatric care across the Wessex Deanery.
Methods Since 2009 we have been developing a training programme in patient safety for all paediatric ST1 trainees in the Wessex Deanery. This has involved a compulsory training day which includes sessions on human factors, communication, leadership and lessons learnt from industry as well as relevant NPSA alerts. Under the supervision of a regional ‘Paediatric Patient Safety Champion’ the trainees undertake a project, using PDSA cycles where appropriate. The patient safety projects are all a result of discussions about safety issues within their individual departments. The programme culminates in a regional, cross speciality patient safety conference, attended by trainees and regional leaders in patient safety from trusts in the region.
Results All paediatric ST1 trainees undertook patient safety projects in 2011. Across all specialities in 2011 there were 77 poster presentations and 15 oral presentations at the patient safety conference. The paediatric projects included ‘Inefficient referrals to medical staff for babies on the postnatal ward’, ‘Weekend care plans for long term patients on paediatric wards’, ‘Safe prescribing among junior doctors for neonates and children in primary and secondary care’, ‘The reorganisation of paediatric handover’ and ‘Creation of departmental Patient Safety Information Boards’. All projects have been very well received, for example one project was invited to present at trust board with a view to rolling out the project across the trust.
Conclusion Patient safety training ensures trainees are aware of their role in this very important area. Our programme empowers junior paediatric trainees to identify patient safety issues in their day-to-day work and to produce high quality patient safety improvement projects. The patient safety training and projects have led to improvements in patient care in Wessex. In addition paediatric ST1's in the region are more aware of the importance and relevance of patient safety in everyday practice.