Staff from the Hip Fracture Unit at the Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust have won a national HSJ Value in Healthcare award for their work in transforming hip fracture care at the hospital. They won first place in the Trauma and Orthopaedics category, announced on 24 May 2016. The HSJ - or Health Service Journal – is a leading health service magazine.
The hip service began as a liaison service in 2004 but has grown into a dedicated 24 bedded hip fracture unit and achieved one of the best scores in the region for meeting all the Royal College of Physicians’ criteria for best practice.
Members of the team who collected the most sought after accolade in British healthcare on behalf of colleagues said: “We are delighted that the service has been recognised as best in the category.”
“The unit and its multi-disciplinary approach has really improved patient outcomes,” continued Dr Apurba Chatterjee, Consultant Orthogeriatrican.
“Patients are now mobile one day after surgery which means they can leave hospital ad return home sooner, helping to reduce our overall length of stay figures. We have also reduced the length of time it takes to transfer a patient from A&E to the unit and are ahead of the national average.”
As well as improving the patient experience the unit has also provided the nursing team with the opportunity to develop specialist skills.
Helen Mallock, Sister said: “All nursing staff on the unit have received special training on pre and post op care for patients with hip fractures. Patients are admitted straight from our Emergency Department and need to be assessed, prepared for theatre, and cared for immediately post op on the unit.
“The whole team has worked extremely hard to get to where we are today. While patients are recovering from the operation, therapists offer falls prevention advice, and as part of their rehabilitation are given the opportunity to use a Wii Fit to help with their strength and balance. The unit also has a dedicated ‘care crew’ who lead activities for patients who may have memory problems or conditions such as dementia.”
The Trust was one of the vanguard of hospitals to follow recommendations from the National Hip Fracture Database (NHFD) in 2007. The “new thinking” at that time brought together anaesthetic consultants, surgeons, trauma practitioners, therapists and the orthogeriatricians, into an updated way of bringing patients’ treatment together in a new hip fracture patient pathway. This led to remarkable progress in hip fracture care with improvement in preoperative assessments, reducing the time to surgery, improved bone health and decreased length of stay.
In the last 12 month period reported, 422 patients have been treated in the unit. The unit has reduced the time it takes to get from the A&E to the Orthopaedic ward from over 10 hours to just over 6 hours. The percentage of patients mobile on the first day after their surgery has improved from 54.3 % ( 2014-15) to 80.6% (2015-16). The average length of stay in hospital has reduced from 19.3 days (2014) to 15.2 days (2015).