The toolkit, developed and hosted by the West of England Academic Health Science Network (AHSN), supports ED staff who are implementing the Safety Checklist. Hospital trusts have been encouraged by NHS Improvement to use both the ED Safety Checklist and the supporting toolkit since 2017, or a similar evidence-based system.
Use of the ED Safety Checklist (or an equivalent) is now supported and endorsed by NHS Improvement, NHS England, the Royal College of Emergency Medicine, the Royal College of Nursing and the Care Quality Commission.
The key findings that were incorporated into the toolkit include:
How to describe the use of the checklist to ED staff so they see it as part of patient safety rather than an admin task that gets deprioritised during busy periods
Getting senior management buy-in for the toolkit
Take time for focused training
Tailoring the checklist to local priorities
Integrating the checklist into existing ED paperwork
How to monitor progress and audit effectively
Dr Jon Banks, Research Fellow at NIHR CLAHRC West who led the evaluation, said:
“One of the things that really came out clearly in our research was how important the framing of the toolkit was by the project team to the ED staff who’d be completing it. It really needs to be clear that it’s there for clinical reasons, to enhance patient safety, not just to collect auditing information or other admin tasks.
“Our evaluation gave lots of recommendations for emergency departments, whether they are in the early stages of implementation or wanting to enhance and monitor what they’ve already done.”
Kevin Hunter, the West of England AHSN’s Associate Director for Patient Safety and Programme Delivery said:
“It has been great to work with our research partners at the CLAHRC on this evidence-informed update of the ED Safety Checklist toolkit. It is vital that patient safety interventions, and their process for implementation, evolves as new evidence emerges and working alongside the CLAHRC has enabled us to synthesise rigorous new research into this flagship tool.”