The conference was superb and highlighted just how far lean healthcare has progressed over the past two years. This year’s event had over 200 healthcare professionals in attendance and offered opportunity for individuals and organisations to network and share best practices. It is the only event of its kind in the UK dedicated to lean working methodologies in healthcare.

Of particular merit and delight was the Midlands Psychology Community Interest Company on their transformation of Clinical Service to Children with Autism, winner of the Lean Champion of the Year: Heart of England Mental Health Research Network, Carly Cooper, and South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust scooping the People’s Choice Award.

Lean Champion of the Year Award:
Heart of England Mental Health Research Network, Carly Cooper

Deputy assistant director of the NIHR Mental Health Research Network, Carly Cooper, was named winner of the Lean Champion Award for her application of lean tools to solve real-world problems within her organisation. Through her energy, leadership and innovation, Carly provided a springboard for embedding lean and driving organisation-wide change. Carly implemented a programme of improvement, beginning by engaging and winning the hearts and minds of staff to support the need for change. She empowered staff with lean tools through training and practical application. Her work resulted in an improvement in staff time management, service for customers and staff engagement.

Best Impact on Patient Experience Award:
Midlands Psychology Community Interest Company Transformation of a clinical service to children with autism through whole service redesign

Following complaints concerning poor autism services, the NHS sought to improve its facilities by turning to Midlands Psychology, to restructure a model with service users at its heart. Within nine months the team cleared a three year backlog of 277 referrals for diagnosis, alongside new referrals. Three years later, despite a 500% increase in numbers seen, there is no waiting list.

Families now have access to a range of previously unavailable evidence-based individual and group therapies. Interventions and training of frontline staff supports children in schools and the community. Parents and children were at the heart of the development of a pyramid model of provision, based upon parent empowerment and dissemination of skills, which are now central to service management and developments.

Productive Series Award – England:
Ashford and St. Peter’s NHS Foundation Trust: A trust-wide approach to releasing time to care

Ashford and St. Peter’s NHS Foundation Trust were celebrated for undertaking a programme to improve reliability, safety and efficiency of patient care. Improvements following the scheme included an 18 % rise in direct care time and an 11 minute increase in every hour for nurses to spend with patients. Best practice guidance is now available for all staff and a culture of continuous improvement has been initiated, with a core group of staff now trained in lean.

Productive Series International Award:

Sligo Regional Hospitals Group Room to care – a productive ward project

To address problems such as a failing admissions process, Sligo Regional Hospitals Group, started the Productive Ward Project, which initiated the designation of an admissions area, offering privacy for patients. The space stores documentation and equipment required for the admission process and a review of patient documentation for patients attending pre assessment, more importantly it avoids duplication of processes for staff and patients.

The admission process is now streamlined, time taken for patients to
be admitted has been reduced and patient care time has increased.

Sustained Improvement Award:
South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
Creating the perfect continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP)
patient pathway
To combat high waiting times and ad-hoc provisions, South Tees Hospitals NHS Trust redesigned its patient pathways. It achieved significant reductions in waiting times, improved access care for patients, added a weekly session for patients experiencing problems with equipment or treatment, as well as, creating a dedicated area to see and treat patients.

Embracing Technology Award:
South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust
Electronic referral and caseload scheduling for
district nursing
South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust were recognised for introducing electronic referrals for scheduling patient care in district nursing. The new system, Hydra, was locally developed at low cost and supports more efficient, safer care planning and patient workflow.

The project has achieved a 42% reduction in medication errors, a 65% improvement in uptake of staff training and development, 6.9% less clinical time spent on non – clinical administration and 2.23% increase in face to face patient time.

Improving Service through Training and Development Award:
Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust CMFT international programme: an innovative training & support programme for internationally qualified doctors

Central Manchester University Hospitals enhanced their new doctor induction with bespoke online training and support systems for new international doctors to ensure an appropriate standard of training before they begin work in the NHS. In 2013, 36 international doctors completed the programme with an increasing number registering and completing the online training. 95% of doctors who took part found the training useful in enhancing patient care.

Sharing Best Practice Award:
North Tyneside Clinical Commissioning Group Lean training in GP practices

The North Tyneside CCG Transformation and
Change team worked with GP practices within North Tyneside to improve staff and patient experiences. The most beneficial projects developed lean methodology, improved staff training, enhanced access to clinicians, reduced waiting times and eradicated waste and duplication of documents.

The People’ s Choice Award, voted on by all delegates during the day’ s conference:

South Tees Discharge Improvement Workshops team for creating the perfect continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) patient pathway.

Well done to all the recipients in their lean endeavours and let’s hope the continuous improvement continues!