Background Project ECHO (Extension of Community Healthcare Outcomes) is a virtual environment learning tool, used within a community of practice among care providers, to facilitate a more comprehensive seamless experience for care staff, patients and families.
Aim The concept of ECHO in this instance is being utilised to disseminate knowledge and best practice within the palliative care community to enable cohesive working. This united approach lends itself to problem solving and improving the quality of decision making within the healthcare sector with emphasis on collaboration and shared focus, to enhance standards of care, in a dynamic and revolutionary manner.
Method Utilising the Gold Standards Framework workshops for nursing and residential homes, we introduced the concept of ECHO by demonstrating a video example plus an in-house demonstration. As a consequence, we gained buy-in and will run a pilot dividing the nursing and residential homes into two groups of eight and delivering six ECHO sessions over a period of six months from July 2018.
Results These sessions will be based on the identified learning needs of the 16 nursing and residential homes. The first three sessions will be based on communication, symptom management at the end of life and advance care planning. A guest speaker will provide a 20 min presentation on the chosen subject which will set the tone for the remainder of the discussion. Two of the nursing and residential homes will provide case studies relating to the theme of the session with active participation from the expert panel at the hospice hub and all participants.
Conclusion From initial observation, the idea of ECHO has captured the enthusiasm and willingness of shared learning to improve patient experience with 16 out of the 24 nursing and residential homes voicing an interest in engaging with the opportunity to participate in ECHO.
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