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One of England's largest foundation trusts set to roll out system of nursing metrics

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One of the country’s largest foundation trusts is set to roll out a system of nursing metrics, which will mirror those already being trialled in hospitals across the North West, Nursing Times has learnt.

Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust is one of the largest in England. It includes Birmingham Heartlands Hospital, Solihull Hospital, Good Hope Hospital and Birmingham Chest Clinic.

Mandie Sunderland, newly-appointed chief nurse at the trust, is set to introduce the system across the trust in order to measure nursing team and ward performance. She was formerly director of nursing at Blackpool Fylde and Wyre Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust – one of the trusts pioneering nursing metrics in the North West.

She told Nursing Times that she wanted to replicate the same seven metrics indicators used in her former trust. These are falls assessment, medicine prescribing and administration, food and nutrition, pressure area care, pain management, patient observations and infection prevention and control.

‘This gave nurses the highest status they have ever had – certainly in my career – at board level. It also reassured me to sit on the board and talk confidently about standards of care. At the moment at Heart of England I feel quite vulnerable on the board because I don’t have this information,’ she said.

Ms Sunderland also said she intended to link the metrics data with patient experience data at the trust, as she had previously in Blackpool. ‘We wanted to know what was happening and cross reference that with the feelings of patients about their care – that was the icing on the cake,’ she said.

‘It was important that this information went to the board. For the first time we had a real chance to get nursing up there and show that it was just as important to the board as finance and targets,’ she added.

As reported by Nursing Times earlier this month, provisional audit data from NHS North West suggests the introduction of a falls metric has reduced falls incidence by 25%.

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