Sir David Behan, Chair of Health Education England discusses how CQC’s new series of case studies highlight the value of different professions working together to deliver person centred care.
Healthcare is a uniquely personal interaction between two individuals: a patient and a clinician, which happens millions of times a week across the country. However, for many patients, especially those with complex conditions, consistently excellent healthcare is only possible with individual staff working together in multi-professional teams.
Teams with the right numbers of people; with the appropriate combination of skills; clear person centred values; and crucially, the resources they need; are the cornerstone of excellent care. The examples in this welcome and important publication show that working across professions and organisations can make all the difference to patients, and staff, in a pressured system.
These case studies from the Care Quality Commission show the value of different professions, sometimes operating in non-traditional environments, coming together to try new ways of working with the patient at the centre without professional, organisational or even condition related boundaries getting in the way.
These innovations can be based around new professions like Nursing Associates joining teams; or disparate groups of professionals being blended into new and different teams to deal with specific challenges; or established teams and professionals learning new skills to make the outcomes even greater than the knowledge of the parts.
There is no one answer and no single organisation can solve all the NHS’s workforce issues. That is why the Interim NHS People Plan, with its key workforce prescription of ‘more and different’, is a product of collaboration and cooperation; an approach mirrored in these case studies. If the reader takes only one message from this resource it should be we are better when we work together and the NHS being better is what our patients, families, citizens and staff deserve.
Visit the Care Quality Commission website to see case studies highlighting what providers have done to take a flexible approach to staffing. You can also read more from CQC’s Chief Inspector of Hospitals, Prof Ted Baker, and Chief Allied Professions Officer (England) for NHS England and NHS Improvement, Suzanne Rastrick.