Safety Measurement and Monitoring programme

Lead: Debbie Clark (Yorkshire & Humber Improvement Academy)
Collaborators: Beverley Slater (Yorkshire & Humber Improvement Academy), Jane O'Hara (University of Leeds)

The usual approach to measuring safety is to analyse incidents of past harm, and to incorrectly assume that absence of harm equals safe care. Commissioned by the Health Foundation (HF), the Safety Measurement and Monitoring Framework, (MMF; Vincent et al, 2013) was designed to help staff think differently about safety. It is facilitating a cultural shift in the NHS from focusing on the absence of harm to the presence of safety. 

Our Evidence Based Transformation of the NHS Theme (EBT) working with Yorkshire Quality and Safety Research (YQSR), Yorkshire and Humber Improvement Academy (YHIA) and two test sites (Bradford District Care Trust and Bradford Royal Infirmary) collaborated on a HF funding application and were awarded £600k to evaluate the MMF. The team is exploring how the MMF might be used and will submit case studies of how it has changed practice. Test site stakeholders took the MMF to frontline teams. The MMF helped test site 1 to understand the conditions triggering patient violence and change staff approaches, which successfully reduced incidences of aggression/violence on their wards. Intelligence from this phase has gone into interactive PDFs and video case studies showing the utility of the MMF www.howsafeisourcare.com 

Following this successful evaluation work, £80k HF funding was awarded to YHIA in collaboration with other regional improvement organisations – Advancing Quality Alliance (AQuA) and Healthcare Improvement Scotland. We are also working with Haelo an NHS
improvement science centre based in Salford. Currently in progress, this second phase involves four national learning events and regional workshops to train teams of individuals to use the MMF. These individuals apply learning in the field between workshops and return to
share progress and improvements.