In early 2011 three established hospices in the South West went beyond the rhetoric. They agreed to work in formal collaboration to address the education needs of their own, and external, clinical and non-clinical staff. A discussion paper was written drawing from the literature of both industry and education. A meeting of key stakeholders in March 2011 agreed a 6–12 month lead in time to the formation of an education consortium.
▶ To establish a gold standard for equitable and transferrable EOLC education for clinical and non-clinical staff
▶ To meet the QIPP agenda with economies of scale
▶ To remove the element of competition and enable a united approach to future income generation.
▶ Initial honest transparent discussion to consider four functional areas of the consortium: ownership, leadership, membership and partnership
▶ This informed the governance structure and roles and functions of the staff
▶ A letter of intent was signed by each stakeholder organisation
▶ It was agreed that the consortium would be seen as part of each organisation and not an external entity
▶ A work plan was agreed.
The mapping process has begun to look at resources in each stakeholder organisation: business development expertise, IT resources and systems, human resources and their capacity as well as the existing education programmes and their current delivery format.
The work of the consortium is in its infancy. In all senses it is a learning organisation as we explore this new approach to sustainable delivery of appropriate End of Life education. The outcome and discussion will be rich by September 2011 and will focus on both the joys and challenges of this work.
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