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P-131 How the clinical front-line can improve quality of care with a ruler, a pen and a quick data plot
  1. Michael Graveney1,2,3,
  2. Nick Adams1,4 and
  3. Gale Clarke1
  1. 1John Taylor Hospice, Erdington, UK
  2. 2Warwick Medical School, UK
  3. 3Aston University, UK
  4. 4TDH Ltd, UK


Hospices are not ‘high tech’ places but they increasingly depend on sophisticated Business Intelligence computing which can be tailored to deliver to front-line staff a lot of clinical audit and untoward event material – including time series charts.

Our hospice has been able to exploit this, and our major system (which runs so many other functions) delivers output that encourages and supports hands-on clinical staff not only to enter data, but also to work on the professional analysis of the final information ensuring important features come into focus.

The presentation will look at some untoward event monitoring analyses and tells how an important piece of professional ethics became immediately clear leading quickly to improved patient care for those thought to be within days of death. Our story is illustrated so that it will be easy to get similar benefits in you hospice with your own investigations. Everything will be grounded in proper ‘Statistical Process Control’ (SPC) theory – but done so without a single mathematical formula!

Over the last 70 years SPC has become the basic quality checking tool throughout industry and beyond, and understandably in the last decade the NHS has encouraged its uptake particularly by acute hospitals. However, the starting point has nearly always beenfar too complicated and off-putting for those who don’t want to have to grapple with maths.

The take-away messages at the end of the Presentation will be:

  • Your hospice’s Business Intelligence system hopefully will deliver the basic charts.

  • Take a ruler, a coloured pen and your professional judgement – and draw ourtwo ‘special lines’ on the chart, then look! In so doing you will have completed the first and major and indispensable SPC step.

  • Professional learning and auditable assurance can follow quickly.

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