The Care of the Elderly Team have been working on various co-design projects with their patients, staff, relatives/carers and stakeholders, over the last few months to improve the department. Our Care of the Elderly department provides treatment for conditions that affect the elderly population. The medical team work across a number of wards throughout the trust.
One of the projects was to change the name of the department as there had been feedback from a number of patients about being called “elderly”, and that they find the term derogatory and would rather not be called elderly. Staff and patients were surveyed to give their opinion on the current name and suggestions for a new name. A total of 183 completed the questionnaire over a one month period, 77 patients and friends/ relatives and 106 staff completed the questionnaire on line or via a paper copy. The majority of respondents (60) chose Senior Adult Medical Service - SAMS and therefore why the team chose this as the new name.
Asma Bawa Ward Clerk SAMS and Dr Emma Wilkinson, Consultant Geriatrician
Another project the team have been involved in is called 'Living Well to the Very End'. The team became part of this high-profile end of life care service improvement programme, in partnership with The Point of Care Foundation back in May 2017.
Dr Emma Wilkinson, Consultant Geriatrician, commented: “The programme has helped to make tangible improvements to the service and through this project, the team aim to ensure that patients have individualised compassionate end of life care on Swift and Holly Wards. This journey has lead the ward teams to the 'What Matters to You?' concept which will enable the wards to make further improvements and changes to the ethos on the wards. 'What Matters to you?' aims to encourage and support more meaningful conversations between staff and patients, focusing on the issues that matter most to people whilst in hospital. This project also focuses in on staff, as happy staff leads to better care. Learning to respect each other in a Multi-Disciplinary Team is important in our wards.
One of the new ‘What Matters to Me’ signs filled out by one of our patients on SAMS
“Out of this have come some amazing ideas including; 'What matters to me' signs above the beds of each patient that are changed daily focussing on the personal things that matter most. Ward staff are designing artwork to line the corridor of the wards depicting how important personalised care is to the team.”
Pictured top: The Senior Adult Medical Service (SAMS) Team in front of the new department sign