4ward Showcase – #CallMe

4ward Showcase – #CallMe image

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Showcasing the great work and achievements of colleagues across our Trust is a big part of the 4ward programme. As well as helping us to work together and celebrate together, our Showcases are a great way of sharing success, learning and best practice.

Who are we and what did we do?

We are the #CallMe project team. The new change to wristbands and labels to ensure we can call all patients by their preferred name – #CallMe is now live.

The team is made up of a number of colleagues from a range of roles across the Trust who have been working together to develop and implement #CallMe across the trust, comprising:

  • IT
  • Consultant anaesthetists
  • Patient experience
  • Communications
#CallMe Team

How have we been moving 4ward?

Over the past 18 months #CallMe was developed and implemented across the organisation as part of Experience of care week.

The #CallMe project was spearheaded by our Consultant Anaesthetist, Dr Mike McCabe after an encounter with a patient that left both the patient and Dr McCabe embarrassed as the patient had opted to change their name, but this was not recorded in their notes.

Demonstrating, 4ward behaviours of ‘we listen, we learn and we lead’ and “do what we say we will do” Mike was inspired to implement change to improve our patients’ experience when in our hospitals.

In hospital, as you will know, we use a number of ways to identify our patients – NHS number, date of birth, hospital number and name. What we have done with #CallMe is add another section to our patients’ hospital identification wrist bracelets and name stickers, which can be completed with their preferred name or title.

The concept of #CallMe is very simple, but it’s really important and absolutely epitomises an approach that puts patients first and treats them with compassion and courtesy. By making the effort to address a patient by their preferred name we send out a clear message that we respect them as individuals at a time when they may well be feeling particularly vulnerable.

What have we achieved so far?

The team involved in #CallMe have worked really hard to bring the project to launch, facing challenges right up to the last minute when IT issues threatened the planned go-live. IT colleagues have updated 181 printer devices across our sites, in order for staff to have the #CallMe conversation with their patients and then record it on their notes.

Thanks to their focus and dedication of the team involved, we have seen #CallMe launched successfully. In the first week, more than 500 #CallMe conversations with patients have been reported, with a huge amount of positive feedback already received.  With 15-year-old patient Will adding “William makes me sound posh!”. His mother informed us “He is never William, only in hospitals.”

Over 70,000 of our patients have completed a #CallMe over the last yearwith 31% of our patients requesting to be addressed differently to their recorded formal forename.

We have also had a lot of interest from other parts of the NHS with a number of Trusts approaching us to ask if they can use our model, and the communications materials which were also created in-house, with a view to launching similar initiatives.

The #CallMe project was recognised in the 2021 BMJ Awards (September 29, 2021), winning the “Digital Innovation Team of the Year” Award, wiht judges adding: #CallMe is an inclusive and patient inspire project, with potential to be rolled out across the health service. It is a memorable and positive digital innovation that was used to drive a cultural change and help patients to be seen as individuals and feel cared for.”

bmj1432 300x100 awards winners 7

Paula Gardner, Chief Nursing Officer at Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “We are delighted that #CallMe has been recognised by the BMJ for such a prestigious award, and is getting the credit it deserves.”

“Ensuring we are communicating with our patients using their preferred name is a valuable step in providing person-centred patient care, and helps us to develop a strong relationship with our patients.

“Patient respect, dignity, experience and care is the focus of our hospitals and of #CallMe and it shows how the smallest things can make the biggest differences to our patients and their experience in our hospitals.”

The introduction of #CallMe is low cost, very simple, but it’s really important. We hope that it will give comfort and reassurance to patients that we respect their identity by addressing them with their preferred name and not assuming that they are most comfortable using their formal birth forename.

  What’s next?

  • Continue to do what we say we will do and have the #CallMe conversations with all of our patients so that it becomes standard practice
  • Continue to share the success and learnings from the project with other NHS organisations and leading health bodies, in order for them to adopt the same approach and share #CallMe across the NHS
CallMe Will