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Lessons from The Productive Ward

Researchers from the National Nursing Research Unit (NNRU), based at the Florence Nightingale School of Nursing & Midwifery at King’s, have recently published a further study into The Productive Ward: Releasing time to care programme.

‘Improving healthcare quality at scale and pace - Lessons from The Productive Ward: Releasing time to care programme’, undertaken by lead researchers Glenn Robert and Elizabeth Smith, builds upon the insights provided by the NHS Institute's The Productive Ward: Releasing time to care Learning and Impact Review (undertaken February-June 2009), undertaken by the NNRU.

The Productive Ward Programme, designed by the NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement in collaboration with the NHS, sets out an innovative and practical way for clinicians and other frontline staff to take the lead in improving ward-based services.

The Productive Ward is a modular, self-directed programme comprising 13 modules. The programme often focuses on simple ideas, such as altering patient handover time, reorganising storage facilities and making better use of data, at the same time it provides a systematic and inclusive approach to improving the reliability, safety and efficiency of the care delivered in a ward setting.

‘Lessons from The Productive Ward’ aims to inform efforts to maintain momentum of The Productive Ward, to support NHS staff going forward, and to discuss mechanisms and arguments for continued commitment and investment. It is no secret that the NHS is facing the biggest challenge in its history and that £15-20bn in cash savings have to be found by 2014. There are countless examples of money saved and quality improved through using the tools and techniques developed by the NHS Institute’s Productive Ward programme. However, though the programme has proved to be extremely successful in the NHS, so far it has been implemented in less than half of the wards in NHS England. This study provides insights on why the programme may not have been implemented on a large scale and offers ideas on how to overcome the barriers to widespread adoption.

Visit the NNRU website to find out more about The Productive Ward and the research completed on the programme by the Unit to date. The executive summary and final report from ‘Improving healthcare quality at scale and pace - Lessons from The Productive Ward: Releasing time to care programme’ are also available to download below.