Ideas from front-line staff can result in quick, positive changes for patients. In Regina Qu’Appelle Health Region, several low-tech solutions are improving patient safety and staff work flow.
Staff at Regina General Hospital’s Cardiac Surveillance Unit (CSU) have trialed and introduced a new IV (intravenous) pole that has a number of attachments, including a hook for a foley catheter, a basket for a chest drainage system, a steering handle and an oxygen tank holder. Patient and family feedback showed that the IV pole allows patients more mobility and greater independence. CSU and Unit 3F are now using the new IV poles; some families have even made donations to purchase more of the $1,000 units.
Other small but practical changes have also been suggested by CSU staff and implemented:
• A yellow “Isolation” magnetic strip is now put on doorframes of isolation patient rooms in CSU. Use of this inexpensive, extra visual cue is spreading to the Pasqua Hospital, long term care and rural facilities.
• Markers attached to whiteboards in patient rooms have rings attached to their lids, so markers that run dry can be quickly and easily replaced. In Lean terms, these improvements are sometimes called “moonshine” – great ideas or innovations that originate organically rather than because of management or central direction, and then are supported because of their obvious merit.
RN Coby Scheidt, Manager of CSU, says acting on staff ideas shows the value of an empowered, creative care team.
“I am very proud of the IV pole and of the ideas brought forward by my staff members,” Scheidt said.
Photgraphs: Coby Scheidt, manager of the Regina General Hospital’s Cardiac Surveillance Unit, and patient Gerard LaCoste with the new IV pole; RN Genine Silzer with the new “Isolation” strip
Photo credit: Medical Media Services, Regina Qu’Appelle Health Region