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RBWH celebrates 12 months

Last month, the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital (RBWH) hosted its inaugural Choosing Wisely forum to celebrate its first 12 months as a Choosing Wisely Australia Champion Health Service.

More than 190 staff and consumers attended the forum, which showcased some of the great results from projects implemented by RBWH to address areas of low-value care, or unnecessary practices across the hospital.

RBWH Executive Director Dr Amanda Dines said: “Since our partnership began 12 months ago, we’ve challenged our staff across RBWH to think differently about how they care for patients, and to take steps to change or improve what they do when things are no longer adding to the patient experience.”

“To be successful in this change, we have needed to work together. I’m proud to say that Choosing Wisely has been embraced at all levels of our organisation,” Dr Dines said.

RBWH has implemented more than 130 initiatives across 30 departments and will leverage Choosing Wisely to drive ongoing innovation, improvement and consumer focus.

RBWH Choosing Wisely Clinical Lead Jessica Toleman said: “Staff from all professions have embraced Choosing Wisely. We are already building quality, capacity and efficiency into our hospital’s services. Unnecessary imaging, alternative models of care, improved processes and different medicine options have all been identified and progressed as part of our work.”

Some of the projects helping reduce low-value care and improve the patient experience include:

  • a fasting clock to help keep patients’ hunger in check by ensuring they aren’t fasting for longer than required ahead of a surgery
  • a one-hour timer is being attached to all Medevac blood boxes requested by the Emergency & Trauma Centre to eliminate potential wastage of O-negative blood. Staff get a reminder to send the blood back to the blood bank if it isn’t used for a transfusion
  • the Nutrition and Dietetics, Gastroenterology and Medical Examining departments are working together to expand the role for specially-trained dieticians to be allowed to conduct routine maintenance of tubes or devices typically managed by nursing or medical staff, and
  • improving the communication with general practitioners, and ultimately improve patient safety, by ensuring medication lists are included on discharge summaries.

Stewardship toolkit for clinical educators

The Health Resource Stewardship for Clinical educators contains educational material about the Choosing Wisely initiative for use in universities, hospitals and health professional colleges

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