Putting high quality care first

GP and patient1

Quality and safety of patient care must always come first and we are committed to making high quality, safe care our top priority. This is why the first of our five goals is make care safer.

We work with all providers of health and care services in the city to ensure that safe and high quality care is top of the agenda, whatever the setting. We support health and care providers, and also challenge them where appropriate, to ensure the very best services are being provided to the people of Southampton.

As part of our commitment to safe and high quality care we have a dedicated Quality Team, which includes experienced nurses and other healthcare professionals. The team work jointly with Southampton City Council as part of our Integrated Commissioning Unit.

Quality and safety are represented on our Governing Body by our Chief Nurse and Director of Quality and Integration, Stephanie Ramsey, and our GP lead for quality, Dr Ian Ward. A Quality Exception Report is presented to the Governing Body each month, which highlights any potential quality concerns and outlines the actions in place. These reports can be viewed as part of our Governing Body papers.

There is also a section on quality, safety and infection prevention and control in each of our annual reports.

The Quality Team work with our providers to ensure that experience of services is good, that the services are safe and that they are effective which means that the services meet people’s needs and help towards improving the health of the people in the city.

Within the Quality Team we have staff who focus on specific areas of healthcare including safeguarding adults and children, infection prevention and control, continuing healthcare, general medical practice, quality contract management, quality improvement, medicines management and improving health and safeguarding in care homes and home care providers. We also have expertise in the management of serious incidents, when something has gone so significantly wrong in the provision of care it needs investigation and review to ensure the lessons are learnt to reduce the possibility of it happening again.

Patient experience and insight – holding providers to account

A doctor and a patient looking at information in a leaflet

The CCG regularly reviews patient feedback on the quality of services provided by commissioned providers through monthly Clinical Quality Review Meetings (CQRM). These are attended by representatives from our providers and the CCG’s quality leads. At the meetings providers share information about their services, so we can understand if they are meeting the needs of the people in the city. In addition we undertake visits to services and attend internal meetings run by the providers to review the quality of services.

The comments we receive about providers from local people, through our Patient Experience team, are monitored at our Clinical Governance Committee meeting held every month.

This offers the CCG opportunities to discuss the detail, identify any trends and assure itself that the experience of its patients – both positive and negative – is being used to drive quality improvements across the healthcare system.

In addition our providers share with us their Patient Experience feedback reports and the results from their surveys, including the Friends and Family Tests.