Technology used to monitor maternity care means staff can spend less time on paperwork and more time to identify improvements in patient care.
Moving from paper-based audit trails to digital technology has helped improve pre-natal, labour and ante-natal care, according to one UK health trust.
Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (NNUH) uses an app which makes quality inspections more efficient.
Hospital staff use mobile devices to control quality metrics on the move and can see the result of live audits as they are completed. This in turn supports their quality improvement programme.
It has chosen the Perfect Ward mobile solution to define its evidence-based metrics or performance indicators across maternity services, and to free up staff from time-consuming audits.
Yvonne Christley, deputy chief nurse at Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust said: “At a glance, we can see metrics for every part of the maternity care pathway, by division and across the whole organisation.
“It gives us rich and vivid data that is simple and easy to interpret. Audits can be now be done in half the time, hugely important when our target for audits is 20 minutes during this critical first phase.”
“Staff have truly engaged with the technology because they see the immediate results of their audits and are keen to share their success stories.
Alan Birch of Perfect Ward added: “Our solution is perfectly designed to support bespoke and transformational quality programmes across NHS hospitals and all health and social care environments in these challenging times.
“For frontline staff, our technology is a powerful motivational tool making their roles easier, more engaging and helping to unleash their full potential.”
The next step for NNUH is to test the new metrics and gain valuable patient feedback by involving the mothers themselves.
December 2020 saw the launch of the Maternity Department’s first Continuity of Care Team to have one full audit across the entire patient journey.
Until now, nurses typically carried out their own individual audits for the mothers in their care.
The new project means audits will be used for shared learning, best practice and identify areas for improvement.