Recent Submissions

  • Recognition, prevention and management of 'digital harm'.

    Quinn, Lauren; Joustra, Arthur; Walker, Vicki
    The digital world continues to evolve and is apparent in all aspects of daily life. For children and young people, their online life is as real to them as their in-person life. Health professionals urgently need to update their knowledge and awareness of the positive and negative impacts of the myriad of online content and how this is viewed and used by children and young people. Digital harm can contribute to multiple clinical presentations and paediatricians must ask about online life in consultations and be able to provide holistic digital safety advice, while recognising serious digital harm requiring safeguarding input.This article will introduce the main areas of harm and how to include assessment in routine clinical practice. It will equip paediatricians to offer advice and safeguard children and young people and offer resources and links to further learning.
  • Hypothermic episodes during hospital admission and the correlation with clinical condition and mortality in different age groups.

    Pugh, Laura; Dattani, Kishan (Clinical Medicine, 2023-11)
    Studies demonstrate that older patients are more likely to have a lower body temperature,1 yet we currently use the same National Early Warning Score (NEWS) parameters for all adults.2 Recent studies indicate that low temperature is associated with increased mortality in younger patients;3 however, no such correlation was found in older patients. We wondered whether episodes of hypothermia are normal in older patients, even when medically safe for discharge (MSFD), or do they correlate with clinical deterioration and poor mortality outcomes?
  • Understanding organizational learning in a healthcare organization during sudden and disruptive change.

    Feltbower, Ceri
    Purpose Complex and sudden change that healthcare organizations often have to respond to, such as during the recent pandemic, can create major disruptions and a prolonged state of alert. Although the impact of such crises can be predominantly negative, rapid adjustments during this time can also yield positive change that can support organizational response to crisis, if managed well. Using insights from organizational learning and organizational change theory, the aim of this study was to understand organizational learning during sudden change. Specifically, the authors aimed to understand the experiences and types of gains and losses in the processes of complex and disruptive change in one large healthcare organization in the UK. Design/methodology/approach Focus group data were used from 23 focus group discussions with 575 participants representing all functions and departments in one Healthcare Trust. Findings The participants revealed the rich gains, losses, and lessons experienced in response to sudden change that can promote organizational learning. Perceived losses are more likely to drive a desire to refreeze “back to normal” and perceived gains more likely to lead to an emphasis on embedding gains and changing to better. Therefore, on balance, the substantial, in number and variety, gains and learnings point to a learning organization. This is an essential attribute for responding to disruptive change successfully and facilitating organizational recovery in a post-pandemic world. Practical implications The findings highlight the importance of timely harnessing of the organizational learning emerging from crises and how this can inform a more resilient organization, as well as supporting sustainable organizational cross-learning. Originality/value By extending these insights on workers’ adaptation to sudden change, the findings can help to advance the science and practice of organizational learning and support organizational recovery, especially as they describe the new status in UK healthcare organizations.
  • Recruiting international staff: et tu, CESR?.

    Puhorit, Prashant (BMJ, 2023-05)
  • Mental health professionals and telehealth in a rural setting: a cross sectional survey.

    Yuseff, Ojali (BMC Health Services Research, 2023-02)
    Background: Telehealth usage has been promoted in all settings but has been identified as a panacea to issues of access and equity in the rural context. However, uptake and widespread integration of telehealth across all parts of the health system has been slow, with a myriad of barriers documented, including in rural settings. The crisis of the COVID-19 pandemic, saw barriers rapidly overturned with the unprecedented and exponential rise in telehealth usage. The uniqueness of the crisis forced telehealth adoption, but as the urgency stabilises, pandemic learnings must be captured, utilised, and built upon in a post-pandemic world. The aim of this study was to document staff experiences and perceptions of delivering rural psychological therapies via telehealth during the pandemic and to capture learnings for future rural telehealth delivery. Methods: An online cross-sectional survey that explored mental health professional's experiences, use, and perceptions of telehealth before and after pandemic-enforced changes to service delivery. Results: Sixty-two respondents completed the questionnaire (response rate 68%). Both the delivery of telehealth via telephone and online video conferencing significantly increased during the pandemic (66% vs 98%, p < .001 for telephone and 10% vs 89%, p < 0.001 for online video). Respondents indicated that client's access to services and attendance had improved with telehealth use but their attention and focus during sessions and non-verbal communication had been negatively affected. The challenges for older adults, people with learning and sensory disabilities, and residents in remote areas with poorer mobile/internet connectivity were identified. Despite these challenges, none of the respondents indicated a preference to return to fully face-to-face service delivery with most (86%) preferring to deliver psychological therapies fully or mostly via telehealth. Conclusions: This study addresses three major gaps in knowledge: the experience of delivering local telehealth solutions to address rural mental health needs, the provision of strong rural-specific telehealth recommendations, and the dearth of rural research emanating from the United Kingdom. As the world settles into a living with COVID-19 era, the uniqueness of the rural telehealth context may be forgotten as urban myopia continues to dominate telehealth policy and uptake. It is critical that rural resourcing and digital connectivity are addressed.
  • Cerebrospinal fluid xanthochromia in acute bacterial meningitis as a red herring for subarachnoid haemorrhage: A case report.

    Akbari, Amir R (African Journal of Clinical and Experimental Microbiology, 2022-04)
    This article presents a case that highlights the importance of excluding underlying intracranial pathology in a patient presenting with severe headache and positive xanthochromia. This case report demonstrated that false-positive xanthochromia without subarachnoid haemorrhage (SAH) is possible in acute bacterial meningitis when there is a combination of traumatic lumbar puncture and either hyperbilirubinaemia or raised cerebrospinal fluids (CSF) protein.
  • Civility in the care setting and the impact of incivility.

    Guzdz, Denise
    Denise Guzdz discusses the importance of healthcare staff being civil towards each other in the workplace and how incivility can affect both staff and patients.
  • Reduction of needlestick injuries among nurses and healthcare assistants through an intervention: national hospital sri lanka (NHSL)

    Dilshara Prathapasinghe, Imesh (BMJ Leader, 2019-11)
    Introduction Cutaneous injuries, resulting from needle sticks, injection devices and sharps are a major issue for all health care workers and cause a considerable threat of spreading blood-related infections like HIV. Aim To reduce NSI among nurses (NO) and health care assistants (HCA) in the NHSL, by assessing the current gaps in the Knowledge, attitude and practice and designing intervention to mitigate the harm and reduce the injuries. Method An Interventional study was conducted in three components, pre-interventional, interventional and post interventional. Random sampling technique was applied to select the appropriate number of nurses and health care assistants. Pre-interventional component: To identify the gaps in the present managerial practices on NSI, a pre-tested structured questionnaire on knowledge, attitude and practices was administered. Interventional component: Two separate in-service programmes were conducted for both categories. WHO recommended injection safety tool kit was also introduced. Post-interventional component: Outcome of the interventions were assessed by measuring the pre- and post-test knowledge, attitude, and practice of the same participants. The same tool was administered. Results Both Groups (NO and HCA) showed a highly significance different after interventions, on Reporting system for NSI: p value (0.05, 0.001). Awareness on Post Exposure prophylaxis (0.003, 0.049). Non–significance difference among nursing officers on Knowledge attitude and practice. All the p values observed 0.05 < and z evident with negative findings. Only Knowledge component among the HCA indicates a significant difference. Conclusion and recommendation It was recommended to conduct more awareness programs and training modules on post exposure management of NSI because it has shown positive Results in both categories. WHO injection safety tool kit has also shown positive Results.
  • War Psychiatry: Identifying and Managing the Neuropsychiatric Consequences of Armed Conflicts.

    Akbari, Amir R
    War refugees and veterans have been known to frequently develop neuropsychiatric conditions including depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and anxiety disorders that tend to leave a long-lasting scar and impact their emotional response system. The shear stress, trauma, and mental breakdown from overnight displacement, family separation, and killing of friends and families cannot be described enough. Victims often require years of mental health support as they struggle with sleep difficulties, recurring memories, anxiety, grief, and anger. Everyone develops their coping mechanism which can involve dependence and long-term addiction to alcohol, drugs, violence, or gambling. The high prevalence of mental health disorders during and after the war indicates an undeniable necessity for screening those in need of treatment. For medical health professionals, it is crucial to identify such vulnerable groups who are prone to developing neuropsychiatric morbidities and associated risk factors. It is pivotal to develop and deploy effective and affordable multi-sectoral collaborative care models and therapy, which primarily depends upon family and primary care physicians in the conflict zones. Herein, we provide a brief overview regarding the identification and management of vulnerable populations, alongside discussing the challenges and possible solutions to the same.
  • Using peer-to-peer induction to improve the confidence of incoming surgical fy1s during changeover

    Smitheman, M; Zafar, A Q (BJS, 2022-03)
    Aim The benefits of peer-led teaching are well evidenced, as are the benefits of interactive over passive learning in a clinical setting. This project aimed to create an FY1-led induction model that could be reproduced across departments, cost-effectively boosting junior trainee confidence, and improving continuity of care during quarterly changeover periods with minimal pressure on senior clinicians. Method Areas for focus were identified by consultants and departing FY1s to produce an FY1-led, presentation-based induction for December and April changeovers. Incoming FY1 confidence was assessed using pre-induction and post-induction surveys to identify areas for improvement in future. An interactive e-learning induction replaced the presentation for the new FY1s in August, again using surveys assessing trainee’s confidence versus previous cycles. Results The first two inductions both showed a complete reduction in trainees rating themselves overall ‘not so confident' or below. Four of the six targeted areas showed increased improvement in confidence in April versus December. The August e-learning induction showed a 71% increase in newly qualified FY1s rating themselves as overall ‘confident’ or ‘very confident’, an improvement on previous inductions. ‘Confident’ and ‘very confident’ ratings for focused areas increased by 62% on average, versus 37% and 27% previously. Conclusions This induction greatly increased FY1s’ confidence, with feedback citing peer-gained insights as the main positive addition to the consultant-led induction. Combining the evidence-based methods of peer-led teaching and interactive e-learning resulted in a replicable, cost-effective, and time-efficient template for improving confidence and continuity of care in the changeover period. This could be implemented in any department nationwide.
  • Feasibility of using QR code for registration & evaluation of training and its ability to increase response rate - The learners' perception.

    Masih, Elwin Ajeet (Nurse Education Today, 2022-04)
    Taking learners' attendance and obtaining an evaluation of teaching is a routine activity performed by teachers. The traditional method of taking attendance using pen and paper posed a huge challenge during the COVID-19 pandemic. This has been time-consuming as compared to pre-COVID as well as frustrating for learners waiting in a queue for their turn to sign the register. Quick Response (QR) Codes were used to complete registration to buy back the time consumed using traditional methods of registration. Learners' evaluations are used as an instrument to evaluate teaching quality. At the researcher's workplace, a traditional paper-based evaluation method has been used for decades. However, over time a significant decrease in the response rate of evaluations was noticed. The pandemic provided an opportunity of using QR Codes to obtain learners' evaluation of teaching quality. This study assessed the learners' perception of using QR Codes for registration and evaluation, and the likelihood of learners completing the evaluation surveys, thus increasing the response rate. Participants of the study were asked to complete an electronic survey to help assess their perception of using QR Codes and a comparison was made between the responses gathered using paper-based evaluations over 5 months and QR Code evaluations over the same 5 months in the following year. The results of this study demonstrate that using QR Codes for registration and evaluation is easy and straightforward, thus increasing the likelihood of learners completing the evaluation. The comparison between paper-based and QR Code evaluations confirms that a substantial increase in response rate can be achieved by using QR Code evaluations.
  • Chief registrars: Leading in a time of COVID-19

    Abeyratne, Ruw (2021-03)
    The NHS is currently in the midst of a global health crisis that requires rapid action from its staff and systems. The Royal College of Physicians' chief registrars, in their role as middle leaders that bridge the gap between junior doctors and senior leadership in NHS trusts nationwide, are uniquely positioned to respond to the COVID-19 crisis. Our strategies fall into three overlapping categories: our roles as middle leaders, developing effective communication techniques and promoting staff wellbeing. We discuss lessons of good leadership in a time of crisis, from embracing new ways of working and new technologies, to utilising professional networks to drive change, to providing tools to support the wellbeing of the colleagues we both lead and care for. The lessons of our initial response are being shared across our national network. We also hope that the novel approaches we have developed will inform the practice of future middle leaders.
  • Impact of COVID-19 pandemic on postgraduate medical education - a survey of UK trainees

    Ehilawa, Patience; Ahmed, Rana; Ariyo, Mary (2021-03)
    The COVID-19 pandemic has caused significant disruption to patient care delivery and medical training in the UK. However, the views of healthcare professionals on the impact of the pandemic has not been fully explored. This study aimed to identify the challenges experienced by healthcare professionals during the COVID-19 pandemic and proffer potential solutions, from the perspectives of postgraduate trainees.
  • How can referrals of patients who are obese to the local exercise referral scheme be increased? A UK based primary care quality improvement study.

    Perera, Keshara; Zaver, Vasudev (2020-06)
    Background: Obesity is classified as a body mass index (BMI) >30kg/m 2 and contributes to poor health outcomes in the UK. In 2017-18, obesity resulted in 711,000 hospital admissions. The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) recommends GPs educate patients who are obese and refer them to exercise programmes. Our practice, Brierley Park Medical Centre, (NHS Mansfield and Ashfield CCG) is in a 4 th decile most deprived region of North Nottinghamshire (UK) and serves a population of 9,288. The local exercise referral scheme (ERS) allows clinicians to refer patients to the local gym for a reduced fee at the point of access. Aim: To calculate and increase the number of adult patients who are obese in our practice who are referred to the local ERS. Method: The number of adult obese patients who were referred to the local ERS scheme from October 2018 to September 2019 was calculated. An intervention comprising internal system alerts, GP education utilising Making Every Contact Count framework and targeted patient group text alerts was designed and delivered. Pre (cycle 1) and post (cycle 2) intervention data from November to February were generated and compared. Results: In total, 2766 adult obese patients (29.8% of practice population) were identified: 16 (0.2%) patients were referred to ERS during cycle 1.96 (1%) patients were referred during cycle 2. Conclusion: The interventions that we have designed and implemented have increased the number of referrals to ERS and may be applied to similar primary care settings.
  • They don’t teach you how to cope with wearing your PPE when you burst into tears on the COVID-19 ICU

    Seddon, Sarah (The Pharmaceutical Journal Blog, 2020-06-10)
    We were warned that we faced a difficult environment. We were taught how to safely don and doff our personal protective equipment (PPE). But in the middle of a COVID-19-positive intensive care unit (ICU), I found myself sobbing into my mask — they definitely didn’t cover this in training.
  • Menopause and the NHS: caring for and retaining the older workforce

    Banks, Suzanne (2019-09)
    Menopause is a natural transition affecting most women between the ages of 45 and 55. Three-quarters of women will experience mild to moderate menopausal symptoms and a further quarter will report them as severe. Symptoms can include night sweats, hot flushes, poor concentration, tiredness, poor memory and lowered confidence. The workplace can exacerbate these symptoms and for some women can influence their decision to stop working earlier than previously intended. The need for support and understanding from managers is crucial and can make a major difference to how a woman deals with her menopause. Many women enter the menopause at the peak of their productive lives. These women have valuable skills, knowledge and experience that employers need to retain, so they should be developing resources to help navigate this normal and natural stage of the ageing process.
  • Empowering the Delivery of Holistic Care for People with Learning Disabilities

    Harrison, Ruth; Evans, Paula (Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, 2019)
  • Impact of a novel teaching method based on feedback, activity, individuality and relevance on students' learning

    Lasker, Simone (2016)
    Objectives: This study examines the perceived impact of a novel clinical teaching method based on FAIR principles (feedback, activity, individuality and relevance) on students' learning on clinical placement. Methods: This was a qualitative research study. Participants were third year and final year medical students attached to one UK vascular firm over a four-year period (N=108). Students were asked to write a reflective essay on how FAIRness approach differs from previous clinical placement, and its advantages and disadvantages. Essays were thematically analysed and globally rated (positive, negative or neutral) by two independent researchers. Results: Over 90% of essays reported positive experiences of feedback, activity, individuality and relevance model. The model provided multifaceted feedback; active participation; longitudinal improvement; relevance to stage of learning and future goals; structured teaching; professional development; safe learning environment; consultant involvement in teaching. Students perceived preparation for tutorials to be time intensive for tutors/students; a lack of teaching on medical sciences and direct observation of performance; more than once weekly sessions would be beneficial; some issues with peer and public feedback, relevance to upcoming exam and large group sizes. Students described negative experiences of "standard" clinical teaching. Conclusions: Progressive teaching programmes based on the FAIRness principles, feedback, activity, individuality and relevance, could be used as a model to improve current undergraduate clinical teaching.