Our NHS People

Breaking the rules for better care – Activity

So the question posed at the end of the last video was “what can you do to revise the rules, remove the penalties, adapt the routines and rituals to enable others to survive and thrive?” To help you to reflect on that last question, we’d recommend the article ‘Breaking the rules for better care’.  In it, the authors undertook research that identified that “78% of the obstructive and wasteful rules identified by patients and staff (in their study) were fully within the administrative control of health care executives and managers to change.”  

The article goes on to conclude that “If asked, in a safe environment, to identify senseless obstacles to productive work, they (the workforce) can and will do so in service of providing better care for patients and families. 

Health care leaders may be well advised to ask their clinicians, staffs, and patients which habits and rules appear to be harming care without commensurate benefits and, with prudence and circumspection, to change them.”

  • Make some notes in your journal in response to this article
  • In conversation with other members of your team, reflect on the habits, routines, rules, rituals, processes that exist in your environment and identify at least one (big or small), that you have the power to change, that would have a positive impact on the work you undertake.  This could be something that would make it easier for you to achieve the outcomes you are required to produce, or it could be a changed outcome that is no longer necessary or required.
  • Make the change and record the outcome.  Make notes in your journal.
  • If you are successful in this endeavour, continue the process and find other unhelpful habits, routines, and processes that you can change that will create a more productive environment for your team.
  • If you don’t succeed the first time around, draw on your personal resilience and give it another go.  What did you learn from your first attempt? Apply this learning and try again.