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'Back to the floor Friday' popular with nurses


Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust is undertaking an action research project to evaluate its Back to the floor Friday initiative and early results suggest it has been popular with nurses.

Professor Janice Sigsworth, who is also a visiting professor to Bucks New University’s nursing and healthcare team, commented: “The vision for nursing and midwifery at the Trust is to work in partnership with our patients to deliver the kind of care that we would want our family and friends to receive. We strive in all we do to identify and meet patients’ and families’ needs and to deliver world class care. The Back to the floor Friday initiative is just one part of a comprehensive work programme to help us to achieve this.”

The evaluation, led by Dr Kathryn Jones, deputy director of nursing at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, and Dr Lauren Griffiths, Head of School Advanced and Continuing Practice at Bucks New University, explores the impact of the initiative on the improvement of patient experience and on patient care.

To date, two surveys and two focus groups have been undertaken with the nurses and midwives who are taking part in Back to the floor Friday. Early themes emerging from the data relate to empowerment, learning together, professional networking, communication, championing change and ‘Matron Power’, and the feedback from many nurses and midwives has been very positive.

Comments include:

“I think this initiative is absolutely superb it ensures that at least one day per week one can solely focus on nursing within the department. It gives the chance to audit and to maintain a presence on the unit enabling me to role model for the junior nurses.”

“It is important for ward staff to see senior nurses willing to participate in delivering patient care. Other disciplines appreciate the ‘burgundy brigade’ being on the ward.”

“I currently work with the ward staff at the bed side on a daily basis but benefit from hearing the current thoughts, ideas and objectives at the Back to the Floor Friday briefings.”

“Consultant medical staff believe senior nurses being in uniform on a dedicated day has had a very positive effect in the clinical areas.”

Workshops will be held in early 2010 with modern matrons and clinical nurse specialists to explore the ways in which nurses and midwives who work ‘on the floor’ every day can contribute to the initiative. Focus groups will also be held with Band 5 and Band 6 nurses and midwives and with therapy and medical colleagues.


Readers' comments (8)

  • Although the above article doesn't really explain what the initiative is, IF it is that Teaching / and senior staff work on the 'floor' one day a week, then it is a great idea.

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  • I work in this hospital and I think managers in the floor is just an added stress to the staff. what we need is more staff. LESS managers. It is also a way of cost cutting. Dynamic and fully educated, professional nurses are what we need, not just TRAINED nurses.One band 7 in the ward plus 2 band 6 and the rest band 5, that will be enough to provide good standard of care to patients. When I see myself as I patient, maybe I will just go those countries where NURSES are better educated to seek treatment rather than be a guinea pig here in the UK.

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  • I just noticed, these MANAGERS are wearing lanyards. IS THAT HOSPITAL not implementing INFECTION CONTROL? I think these managers have to be role models.

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  • I work in this trust, on a ward which is always under staffed and overloaded with work. Again the NHS, to give a good image of its self, its ready to pay more managers to judge the work of others and add extra stress. We desperately need staff to share the workload on the ward, not to judge people who are already over streched by picking on details like a drop of urine and keeping a blind eye on the big picture.

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  • i agree with you. if the NHS will replace one manager with 2 band 5s, then the will be an effective cover for patient care. if you will make a random visit to the wards, you will see more BLUEs rather than stripes.

    less BLUE less Stress

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  • Pah! What a load of lies.
    I think if this story had any depth, the real reviews from ordinary Staff nurses is likely to be one of derision.
    Matrons are already an over-burdensome, expensive drain on resources, who offer no real improvements to patient care.

    The role is for nurses 'put out to pasture', a 'sinecure' that allows for their mid 50's to be comfortable.

    I've worked alongside these 'Friday fakers' and have only found them slow, focused on care rituals of 50 years ago or instead, they merely pander to the more pointless activities.

    matron:- 'can mr so and so have a shave?'

    me:- no, he ought to worry more about the fact that having an NG, IV fluids, a catheter, blood transfusions, Kabi, a sliding scale means i have a slightly different view of what i 'm going to give a damn about.

    Look under the covers Nursing Times, 'Cliical Fridays' is no more an exercise in patronising nurses than Matrons are ineffective at initiating or influencing improvements in their clinical areas

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  • I work at this Trust and think that the 'Burgundy Brigade' are heading in the right direction. At least trying.
    I'm a Band 7, nursed for 35 years, am in my mid-fifties and have nursed in several countries - in country, city & district nurse settings.(Midwifery, paeds, ICU, Gen Nurse)
    Personally, I think that Senior Nurse managers above Band 7 should do a ward round seven days a week. Not to be at the bedside, but to offer immediate support to any problems that may have arisen for their team & be ACTIVE about it.
    It would be far better for the number of Band 5/6s to be increased to ensure full staffing levels, which in turn would allow time for patients to not only their IVs, drugs, etc attended to ON TIME, but they could been given a shave, washed and fed a meal as well. It is, in my opinion, extremely important to make sure that a patient is clean and comfortable as this helps them to psychologically heal whilst all of the 'fancy' stuff is being done as well. Younger nurses may not appreciate the wisdom of this, but old birds like me do!
    The worst nurse manager that I have had was here, and that was because she was never available, never responded to phone calls, emails or turned up on the ward when asked by any staff for her professional guidance & assistance. I now have absolutely no desire to seek promotion to above Band 7 as I do not see the point of what they do in their current roles. Most are seen and not heard while everyone else struggles with mind-boggling work loads, few staff to do it all, agency staff who neither know the ward or have any loyalty to the hospital/team/ward, and unrealistic paperwork. Also - who do we go to above Band 7 for one-to-one career guidance? And don't suggest the manager!!! They wouldn't have a clue, and you'd be lucky if you could get an appraisal done to give you a few clues. One last comment, I just wish that the nursing leaders - NMC, union and hospital managers - would stand up and fight for more nurses on the wards, instead of finding more ways to cut costs and hand our skills over to inappropriate people. They need to simply demand that this is done, otherwise nursing services will be ceased until further notice. Stop bleating and take action.

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  • shaving doesn not help you psychologically heal. it is a theory with almost no HARD evidence to back it up. once that 5 minute activity is up, what do you fil the other 23 hours 55 minutes with?
    see shaving and washing for what it really is. 5th place after drugs, obs, fluids and food.

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