Background Audit and the use of data in healthcare has a long history, but has often failed to bring about the expected improvements. Many settings have not fully embedded audit in clinical practice (Paton, Ranmal, Dudley, et al., 2015. Arch Dis Child Educ Pract Ed. 100:83). During the pandemic auditing at Douglas Macmillan Hospice (DMH) was not seen as a priority due to demands on the clinical teams. To re-establish audit within the clinical setting the hospice looked to a software solution to support quality improvement.
Methods DMH evaluated several software audit solutions and chose Tendable. This solution helps embed quality improvement into practice by involving all members of the clinical team and utilising an easy-to-use mobile app. Staff can complete real-time audits much more quickly than paper-based audits releasing time to care and contribute to the actions required helping to complete the quality improvement cycle.
Results DMH has developed several best practice audit questions utilising Tendable’s experience and community of health and care professionals. Following an outbreak of COVID-19 the Infection Control team and Health protection team were reassured by the level of auditing that had been completed. Core audit topics such as Infection Control, Medications Management, and Patient Experience have been established. Future work will be carried out to evaluate patient outcome measures. Staff feel empowered to challenge practice and make suggestions for improvements.
Conclusion Prior to using a software solution such as Tendable, DMH had identified a gap in ensuring that appropriate timely audits were completed that could be shared and learnt from. Now, DMH can safely say that the audit programme that is in place will support CQC inspections and contribute to quality improvement.
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