Background Our hospice vision is to meet the needs of more people. Our unregistered staff are key in helping us to provide more care and we are expanding this workforce. It is essential that these staff are equipped to meet the changing demands of their roles and especially for those new to a caring role, in order to promote job satisfaction, improved staff retention and create career progression opportunities.
Aim To develop a comprehensive training programme for new and existing clinical support staff that ensures parity and quality of care, allowing staff to develop necessary clinical skills and competencies, promoting shared experiences and best practice across all teams.
Method A questionnaire to assess the developmental needs of non-registered staff was developed. This included the in-patient unit Healthcare Assistants (HCAs), Hospice at Home Carers and Community Support Assistants. Nurses from the education unit undertook shadow shifts to understand the roles and responsibilities first-hand. The combination of findings informed the creation of ‘The ‘Tulip Standard Essentials of Care’ training programme.
Results The ‘Tulip Standard’, incorporates the Care Certificate and essential clinical skills, such as non-pharmacological symptom management. Delivered initially over three days with three monthly follow up days to include reflection, culminating in the student receiving both the Care Certificate and The Tulip Standard Certificate. Students learn the complexities of caring for those receiving palliative and end of life care, and their families and carers, within a supportive peer group. Attendees have said: ‘So enjoyable, engaging and informative, I am extending my knowledge and understanding’. ‘Gaining more knowledge in all areas needed for my role’.
Conclusion The new Tulip Standard programme has shown improvements in staff confidence and feelings of support. It promotes quality and parity of training for our non-registered workforce. Flexibility in the follow-up days allows for continual development, based on learners’ needs and feedback.
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