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P-287 Building on competency
  1. Colin Twomey,
  2. Tara Schrikker,
  3. Ruth Bacon,
  4. Susan Stocks and
  5. Eirian Levell
  1. St Wilfrid’s Hospice (Eastbourne), UK


Background The hospice has a well-established competency framework for Registered Nurses and Healthcare Assistants which guides staff progression. The importance of developing capabilities of the hospice workforce has been well documented (Help the Hospices, 2012). The hospice’s Nursing and Care Quality Forum recognised the importance of creating further growth opportunities for those who had achieved the most experienced level of competence whilst engaging staff in continuous practice development.

Aims To ensure an engaged and motivated group of staff working together to progress practice development across the hospice. The programme formed the next stage in the cycle for those who had completed the competencies at the highest level for their role and recognised the need to embed continuous quality improvement whilst providing on-going career development.

Methods A two-year programme was designed. The first year consisted of facilitated monthly sessions covering broad skills related topics. The second year required staff to work with colleagues on a particular project aimed at improving patient care and experience. Eleven Registered Nurses and 13 Healthcare Assistants have participated. In addition, participants attend regular facilitated sessions to ensure on-going support and engagement. Participants self-assessed their confidence and competence at the beginning of the programme to allow evaluation of its impact after completion.

Results The second year has produced increased engagement from staff who have worked together on specific areas of practice development. The areas include: bowel assessment; shift patterns; feedback from service users of a telephone helpline; outcome measures; safer nursing toolkit; rehabilitative palliative care; dying phase implementation; record keeping and documentation; review of multi-disciplinary meeting. A planned event will celebrate the programme and share learning.

Conclusions The two-year programme has strengthened team working and created a culture of curiosity and continuous improvement.

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