Background A change in practice within a hospital specialist palliative care team (SPCT) to allocate each specialist team member to an identified group of clinical areas. The aim being to improve effectiveness of the service with increased continuity of contact for patients, relatives and multi-professional staff. We describe this as clinical alignment.
Aims To evaluate the impact of introducing a change in SPCT service delivery by measuring multi-disciplinary responses about the effectiveness, accessibility and quality of SPCT provision. To also evaluate the impact of Clinical Alignment in supporting ward staff to meet their educational and development needs.
Methods A questionnaire was developed for multi-professional ward teams across adult care designed to elicit their experience of SPCT provision. A second questionnaire was designed for the SPCT. Questionnaires were given out 9 months after adopting clinical alignment and were anonymised with only the role of the respondent identifiable. 180 questionnaires were given to ward teams. Response rate was 70% (n=126). SPCT response rate was 100%.
Results Of multi-professional team responses 94% were somewhat satisfied or very satisfied with SPCT input. 79% responded that input was of high or very high quality, 82% that the SPCT was very or extremely responsive, 86% somewhat or very approachable and 90% somewhat accessible or very accessible. 53% Respondents felt supported in education and development. Incomplete questionnaires were returned, completed data from these was included. SPCT responses were generally positive, with agreement to continue to work with clinical alignment in service delivery.
Conclusions Multi-professional and SPCT responses were overwhelmingly positive. All SPCT responses indicated a contribution to the education and development of multi-professional colleagues that was endorsed by only a small majority of respondents. This variance will inform service development.
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