The Health Education England working across the West Midlands Compassion 2015 Prize Award was won by Dr Charn Gill.
I first noticed the award on the West Midlands Deanery website when reading about the previous year’s winner. When the information came this year and it stated that there was an award for compassion I felt it would be a good opportunity to enter and reflect on what I had experienced in the last few months. I would encourage everyone to enter, I never thought I would win and was shocked but pleasantly surprised. However more than anything I think it is a good opportunity to reflect back on what you have done in FY1 and it is easy to forget how some patients have such a huge impact on you. In my paper I wrote about various patients I had cared for during my geriatric placement where I had learnt so much about compassion and how my views on elderly care had changed from my experience. Furthermore I was going through a difficult time with my grandmother being ill and it was a good opportunity to reflect on how my opinions of how compassionate care for my patients had changed.
The Health Education England working across the West Midlands 2015 Trainee Prize Award was won by Dr Laura Cheetam.
I decided to enter the FY1 award to raise awareness of both the work I had conducted during my FY1 year, and how FY1s can play a significant role in quality improvement and contribute to positive change. We have a unique and fresh view of the clinical environment. This perspective, coupled with the enthusiasm we all have for improving patient care, is powerful. I have encountered many FY doctors who feel disenchanted, and that their views, work and concerns are not acknowledged. I wanted to show that you do not have to be an academic foundation trainee in a teaching hospital in order to undertake a significant project. My project had many setbacks and disappointments. Not all my aims were realised and not all my expectations turned out as I thought they would. However, I persevered and eventually my project yielded significant positive results.
I would encourage any foundation trainee to enter the competition if they have completed a project that they are proud of. I would particularly encourage F1s who feel their projects did not produce the demonstrable positive change that we are traditionally taught to value, if they feel they have learnt or gained from conducting the project or feel that their project provides lessons that we as a medical professional could learn from.
My project consisted of two parts. The first involved audits of drug reaction history documentation in the Emergency Medicine and Medicine divisions against standards mapped to NICE guideline CG183. These audits showed very poor compliance with standards: drug reaction history was almost always limited to a drug name or ‘NKDA’, and in some cases, was not documented at all. However, I encountered difficulties in implementing many of my action plan points, such as a proposed change to clerking proformas, due to lack of managerial support. I conducted a re-audit of the medicine division four months later, but compliance was no better than at initial audit, and worsened in certain areas. The second part of my project assessed FY1 prescribing and drug reaction history taking knowledge, their prescribing confidence, and preferred forms of educational interventions to improve prescribing. FY1s performed poorly in all key prescribing areas that were assessed. Notably their prescribing confidence was very low when starting FY1, and increased only marginally three months into their first placement. I developed and produced a set of prescribing prompt cards, the most popular choice of educational intervention, and piloted them with FY1s. The prompt cards received positive feedback, and have since been distributed to the current FY1 cohort. Furthermore, my re-audit of drug reaction history documentation was flagged up to management, resulting in the establishment of a Task and Finish group to implement my action plan. This, alongside other concomitant efforts, has helped to reduce adverse penicillin prescribing incidents by 75%, from one per week to one per month.
My audit work has reinforced to me that audits are not just a tick box exercise: I have both learnt a great deal about quality improvement and enhanced my professional development in ways I had not predicted.
Page Updated on: 5 October 2016