An electronic tool that can be used to facilitate better workforce planning was unveiled by nurses at London’s Great Ormond Street Hospital for children today.
The Paediatric Acuity and Nursing Dependency Assessment Tool (PANDA) was developed by senior nurses at Great Ormond Street, and is the first of its kind to be used in a paediatric setting in the UK.
Ward staff input data on a patient’s condition every 12 hours, such as how much oxygen they are on and whether they are having IV therapy, and the tool then uses this data to measure the child’s level of acuity and dependency.
This information can then be used to ensure paediatric units have the right numbers of nurses, and to help staff assess a patient’s clinical risk. The tool, which replaces a paper-based system, also frees up administrative time so that nurses have more time to spend with patients.
Additionally, because the system captures data in realtime, it also enables staff to create flexible, quick and accurate reports.
GOSH director of nursing and education Judith Ellis, who helped develop the system, said: “Matrons and ward sisters can use the tool to make sure they have the right skill mix and numbers on the wards, and because the data is patient specific it can also be used to help plan care. The live data makes it easier to see the workload on any ward at any time.
“The system can also help us look at funding streams for patients and the classification of high dependency areas. We can go to commissioners with evidence of how many children have required high dependency care and for how long, and the level of nursing care needed,” she added.