11 March 2016
A scheme to give local people with a learning disability greater say in health services has been shortlisted for a top NHS award, in not one – but three separate categories.
Rotherham Doncaster and South Humber NHS Foundation Trust (RDaSH) has been shortlisted from over 200 entries in NHS England’s Friends and Family Test Awards 2016, in the Best Friends and Family Test Accessibility Initiative, Best Friends and Family Test Initiative and Friends and Family Test Champions categories.
All NHS funded community services have an obligation to ask their patients to take part in the Friends and Family Test, which is one question: Would you recommend this service to friends and family? The Test offers a range of responses, which combined with additional follow-up questions, provides a process to highlight both good and poor patient experience.
RDaSH has been shortlisted for its ‘Happy or Not’ patient experience stations, which it has introduced across all its Learning Disability Services in Doncaster, Rotherham and North Lincolnshire to provide people with a learning disability with an accessible, anonymous, easy to use solution for providing feedback on the care they receive.
RDaSH Learning Disability Services Business Development Manager Iona Scott said: “Since introducing the Friends and Family Test in 2013, we found the number of responses relating to our Learning Disability Services was particularly low compared to other services in the Trust – despite forms being available in ‘Easy Read’ format – so we looked for a more accessible way of capturing feedback.
“We introduced ‘Happy or Not’ patient experience stations, which allow service users and carers to rate the service they have received by pressing one of four ‘smiley face’ pictorial buttons, reducing the barriers for people with reading difficulties.
“The results speak for themselves – within the first two months of installing the devices they collected 731 pieces of patient feedback in our Doncaster Community Services alone, representing a 2258% increase on the number of traditional forms received in the same period.”
RDaSH Complaints Manager Laura Powell said: “This kind of feedback is vital in transforming NHS services and supporting patient choice.
“It supports the fundamental principle that everyone – regardless of their age or disability – who uses NHS services should have the opportunity to provide feedback on their experience.”
RDaSH staff will find out if they’ve been successful when the winners are announced on Thursday 17 March.
For more information on the Friends and Family Test, please visit the RDaSH website at www.rdash.nhs.uk