Background The importance of ‘Human Factors’ is becoming widely recognised within healthcare settings, particularly in relation to incidents resulting in poor patient outcomes.1
Ipswich Hospital aims to become a ‘High Reliability Organisation’ by mitigating the inherent risks present within complex multi-disciplinary working environments.2 To this end, a ‘Human Factors’ programme, aimed at all individuals working in a clinical environment, is in development. The programme utilises high fidelity simulation scenarios to expose the shortcomings of human behaviour under duress to optimise future performance.
Methodology All staff on selected wards, one medical, one surgical, will undergo intensive ‘Human Factors’ training, comprising of compulsory attendance at the ‘Ipswich improving patient safety’ simulation course and ongoing reinforcement of learning objectives within the ward environment.
Staff will complete a pre-training questionnaire, based on Cockpit Management Attitudes Questionnaire, repeated following training and 3 months later.3,4 Patients and relatives will complete pre and post intervention questionnaires, developed from a ‘Patient Measure of Safety’ questionnaire.
Outcomes expected Outcomes will be measured using a variety of methods, primarily written questionnaires. Differences in responses following the intervention will be reviewed. The number and nature of complaints and clinical incident reports will be compared with the same month the previous year.
Subsequently we anticipate staff will report more untoward events and that communication will improve. Hopefully this will be reflected in number and nature of complaints and improved ward morale.
Potential impact We believe our ‘Human Factors’ programme has the potential to improve communication with patients and within multidisciplinary teams, thus reducing clinical errors and complaints. The programme has the potential to become a regional requirement for all staff working in clinical areas.
Norris B. Human factors and safe patient care. J Nurs Manag 2009;17:203–211
Carayon P, et al. Human factors and ergonomics as a patient safety practice. BMJ Qual Saf 2014;23:196–205
Gregorich S, et al. The structure of cockpit management attitudes. J Appl Psychol 1990;75(6):682–690
Helmrich R. Cockpit management attitudes. Hum Factors 1984;26:583–589
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