Theatres team named as finalists in national safety champions awards

Posted on July 5, 2021 by AireAdmin

The theatres team at Airedale Hospital have been named as finalists in the prestigious HSJ patient safety awards, recognising their outstanding contribution to healthcare. 

The award, in the Perioperative and Surgical Care Initiative of the Year category, recognises surgical teams who are finding new ways to deliver consistently safe care, despite the challenges of Covid-19.

The theatres team, who were shortlisted despite tough competition from hundreds of applicants, were selected based on their ambition, visionary spirit and the demonstrable positive impact that their project has had on patient and staff experiences.

The team worked together to constantly improve compliance with the ‘Five Steps to Safer Surgery’, a surgical safety checklist developed by the World Health Organisation to reduce ‘never events’ such as wrong site surgery.

Karen Taylor, Clinical Governance Manager in Theatres at Airedale NHS Foundation trust explains:

“Over the last 3 years we’ve really focussed on improving communication between the whole team before during and after surgery. Before the operating list commences we have a “Team Brief” which involves all the team including the surgeon and anaesthetist where we discuss each patient’s requirements for the whole of the perioperative event. We have a ‘Sign In’ to check our patients understand and consent to their procedure, a surgical pause “Time Out” prior to surgery where we confirm all the details around the patient’s procedure and finally we perform the “Sign Out” which once again reaffirms that everything is in place to enable the safe transfer of the patient to Recovery. At the end of the operating list the whole team collectively have a “Debrief” and there’s an opportunity to discuss how everyone feels the list went.

We’ve also introduced a dedicated Safety Officer role in theatre to facilitate effective communication to support all aspects around the safety checks in the operating list. “

Karen continues:

“Our team are absolutely delighted to have been named as finalists for this award.  We consider it a real privilege to work for our community and our focus is always to give our patients the safest possible care.  It’s never just a small patient procedure for our teams, it is about that person and how this experience feels to them and we keep that in our minds at all time.” 

David Crampsey, Medical Director at Airedale NHS Foundation Trust says:

“We are very proud that our team has been shortlisted for the surgical and perioperative safety award, recognising the collaborative efforts and dedication of our team members to successfully implement the new safety officer role alongside their work on the 5 steps to safer surgery initiative. We are committed to delivering improved outcomes for our patients, and to be chosen among the other incredible nominees is a wonderful achievement.  This nomination has been a tremendous boost to our team and I am sure it will bolster our continued efforts to improve our services.”

Winners will be selected ahead of the ceremony, which will take place as part of the Patient Safety Congress and Awards in Manchester in September 2021.