Productive Ward Project
The Productive Ward is a project which was designed by the NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement. Its focus is to reduce the amount of time nurses have to spend on tasks that take them away from the bedside (direct patient care).
Why is it necessary?
The Nursing Times and Health Services Journal undertook a survey of 1,250 nurses in 2007 and found the following:
- 73% said they didn’t spend as much time on patient care as they felt they should or wanted
- Over 90% said that this had a negative impact on patient care and their job satisfaction
- Typically nurses only spent 20-30% of their time on direct patient care
How is the project going to help?
The project looks at how nurses can cut down on other tasks such as walking, looking for equipment, meal rounds, medicine rounds, ward rounds etc. and spend more time at the bedside – “releasing time to care.”
Much of the project will be about simple things, for example ensuring that equipment/stock is readily available. This may mean keeping things in more than one place, so that nurses do not have to constantly walk long distances, repeatedly throughout the day in order to collect what they need. It’s astonishing how much time can be saved by implementing simple measures!
What did the pilot study find?
The project was piloted in 2007 and the findings were very positive:
- The amount of time nurses spend on patient care has doubled
- Nurses spend less time on meal rounds, medicine rounds and other tasks, while the quality and reliability of care is higher
- There has been a reduction in the number of complaints relating to quality of care
- Wards have saved money, through returning unnecessary equipment/supplies back to central stores
- The wards are calmer and nursing staff, doctors and patients are much happier
How is the project being implemented at Poole Hospital?
The project is being rolled out gradually across all wards. Each team will take charge of the project for their own ward, but they also have the support of a facilitator and support nurse, whose responsibility it is to assist and guide the ward staff as they work through the project.
If you would like any further information, please have a look at the national website:
Project Lead: Mandy Rann
PW Facilitator: Maria Smith
PW Support Nurse: Sue Power
PW Office: (01202) 442923
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