Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust and Imperial College London win innovation award to improve quality of healthcare through IT

A team from Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust and Imperial College London has been selected by the Health Foundation, an independent health and health care charity, to be part of its £1.5 million innovation programme Innovating for Improvement.

The programme is supporting 21 health care projects across the UK with the aim of improving health care delivery and the way people manage their own health care through the redesign of processes, practices and services.

Currently, the Trust receives almost 20,000 patient comments a month from a range of channels including surveys, forms and correspondence. These comments are recorded and monitored manually and, based on the volume of comments to process, means that there is less time for teams to make the required changes. This project will develop IT software to process all anonymised patient feedback and group them into themes in order to better identify and prioritise areas of improvement. As a result, our efforts can instead be focused on finding solutions to common problems rather than administrative processes.

The team will be led by Stephanie Harrison-White, head of patient experience; Mr Erik Mayer, consultant surgeon and clinical senior lecturer; and Dr Bob Klaber, consultant paediatrician and associate medical director for quality improvement.

Stephanie said: “We want to listen to our patients and act on their feedback every time. This innovative technology will help transform these comments into meaningful themes that can be used to drive patient-focused quality improvement.”

Erik said: "This exciting project is bringing together the complementary expertise from the Trust and the College to develop sustainable and better solutions using the huge amounts of data collected in the NHS. This will help us realise the potential of how clinical informatics can be embedded in everyday healthcare to improve the quality and safety of the care we deliver for patient benefit."