Reflections 2016: Jan Sobieraj – Real progress in our hospitals this year

This story is over

In my Reflections column last year I had just started in post at United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust and was still familiarising myself with the organisation, its people, our patients and the challenges we face.

One year on and I am overwhelmed with just how far we’ve come as a trust. Over the past 12 months we’ve seen an increase in the number of people attending our hospitals but we’ve still managed to improve many of our quality measures as well as keep within our financial plan.

So as a trust we’re doing more, becoming safer and we’re being more efficient with our money – a fantastic achievement.

Over the last year, we’ve made some real progress as an organisation:

  • Doubled the number of patients who survive following a cardiac arrest out of hospital
  • Reduced the incidence of pressure ulcers by nearly 0.5%, compared with the national rate of 4-6%
  • Recruited more registered nurses from the EU and Philippines, and recruited 160 newly qualified nurses to our hospitals
  • Achieved a big reduction in falls – our falls per 1,000 bed days performance is now 3.58%, against a benchmark of 3.90%
  • Reduced our incidents of hospital acquired infections with no cases of MRSA and 36 cases of C Difficile this year.
  • Made big strides towards digitalisation to improve patient care and to improve the way information is shared between with clinical staff
  • Made £28 million savings so are being more efficient
  • Seen over 3,000 more attendances across our emergency departments so far this year compared with the previous year
  • Invested £25 million in capital projects to redevelop and upgrade hospital estates, including the upgrade of ward areas at Grantham, maternity, outpatients and some ward areas at Lincoln and maternity and paediatrics at Pilgrim

Our priority for next year will be to develop our five year plan for how hospital services across Lincolnshire will improve, meeting the needs of our local population and our staff and delivering the best possible quality of care within budget.

More about this can be found in my monthly column for December.

We’re also entering one of the busiest winter periods where significant demand will be placed on our services.

I would like to take this opportunity to remind people to use our services appropriately so as not to increase the pressure on our staff during these busy periods.

Please only visit our A&Es with serious or life threatening illnesses.

In order to stop the spread of infections please stay at home if you have had diarrhoea, vomiting or ‘flu-like’ symptoms in the last 72 hours.

As an organisation our biggest strength is our staff and in the year I have been at ULHT I have been overwhelmed by their dedication, enthusiasm and resilience to the challenges we face.

Thanks to all of you for working hard and doing your very best for our patients, and a particular thank you to those working over Christmas and the New Year.

To our staff, patients and the public, I wish you a Happy New Year!

New Year’s resolution

I’d like to spend more time with primary care (GPs and others) so I can see how we can jointly provide better support for patients out of hospital.