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West Middlesex Hospital shortlisted for national health award

The hospital's work to improve patient safety has earned it a place in the finals of the prestigious HSJ Awards

A hospital's innovative scheme to improve patient safety has been shortlisted for a national award.

West Middlesex Hospital's HEADS-UP project is one of seven initiatives in the running for the Health Service Journal Awards patient safety category.

The daily briefings enable staff at the hospital, in Twickenham Road, Isleworth, to discuss the challenges of the previous day and address any issues before they come to a head.

All hospitals are required to investigate serious incidents, where patients are harmed or put at risk of harm, to assess what can be done to prevent their recurrence.

But West Mid says the HEADS-UP briefings, introduced in December 2013, are a more proactive way to stop patients being put at risk in the first place.

Dr Sam Pannick, who leads the programme, said: "We know that incident reporting is valuable, but organisations need more than one way to properly detect harm or near misses.

"HEADS-UP was designed to get a better idea of what staff are every day, the things that frustrate frontline teams and put patients at risk.

"HEADS-UP is a more proactive way of thinking about patient safety on the ward environment; teams identify the problems they need to address before any patient comes to harm."

The scheme has already received a 'highly commended' award at this year's Health Education North West London's educational awards and been praised by watchdog the Care Quality Commission as an "innovative" and "outstanding" practice.

It was one of 1,600 entries from more than 600 organisations for the HSJ Awards, the winners of which will be announced during a ceremony at London's Grosvenor House Hotel on November on November 18.

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