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Community team improve service at Barnet, Enfield and Haringey Mental Health NHS Trust

Thu 30th January, 2014
Community team improve service at Barnet, Enfield and Haringey Mental Health NHS Trust

Barnet, Enfield and Haringey Community Support and Recovery Team (East) made a bigger impression than expected when they set out to enhance the patient experience.

The team wanted to improve their referral response rates, reduce waiting times and provide a service more tailored to the individual needs of their users, in order to maximise recovery and discharge. However, their first LiA Pulse Check revealed very low levels of staff satisfaction within the team due, in part, to high caseload levels. This was something that team managers were determined to change.

After identifying priority areas, working groups were established. With each group focusing on different areas of the patient pathway, problems could be identified and solutions developed quickly. By transferring over the logging and initial screening of referrals to administrative staff, clinical staff were able to re-establish multi-disciplinary referral meetings that focus on ensuring the appropriate skill-mix is brought together for the initial meeting with the service user. This ‘tailoring’ to users’ needs has shown many benefits for patients, including faster and more timely treatment, and safer and more effective discharge. It is also proving to be a more efficient way of working, minimising delays through the pathway and utilising staff skills effectively.

At the same time, strenuous efforts have been made to change the way that staff within the team interact with each other and with their managers. LiA is a regular agenda item putting ‘listening’ at the heart of staff meetings, and as a result, changes have been made.

A rota has been introduced to give staff themselves the opportunity to chair their own team meetings, protected time has been established for honest discussions, and more social time as a team has enabled everyone to feel that their contribution to the service is valued.

It’s early days, but results from the second Pulse Check have been very impressive. We have seen a huge shift in a short space of time with staff feeling 55% more valued, and 56% more staff feeling that they are providing a high quality service to their patients.

Pauline Davis, Manager of the Support and Recovery Team commented:

“LiA gave us the impetus to implement changes which had been needed for some time. The results exceeded expectations as demonstrated by the LiA Pulse Check. We are a happier, more cohesive team which is reflected in our practice and feedback received from service users”.

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