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Quality and Patient Safety Improvement Programme for Mental Health

Since January 2011, 2gether NHS Foundation Trust has been involved in the NHS South West Quality and Patient Safety Improvement Programme for Mental Health.  The NHS South of England (SoE) and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI), an international body, have now developed a revised safety programme with some original and new aims to be achieved by March 2015, and are facilitating this programme for Mental Health, which is being led by a collaborative “faculty”. 

The Chief Executive for 2gether NHS Foundation Trust is the lead Executive for this programme, across the South of England.  This is a recent expansion to the programme and Trusts from across the South are now participating alongside some of the organisations who have previously participated in the original South West programme. Some aims are core to both programmes and reflect both national and local requirements whilst some aims are new for our organisation.   For simplicity and clarity, the term Patient Safety Programme (PSP) includes aims from the South West and the South of England programmes. 

The overall aim of the Patient Safety Programme is to reduce avoidable harm to inpatients and community patients in our care, by making improvements in the way we work, and thereby improving the patients’ experience of what is provided. Some programme aims are new for our organisation and a work plan is in development.  The revised aims of the programme include a new focus on physical care as well as mental health care.  

The overall aim of the South of England Collaborative is to reduce harm to users of mental health services by focusing improvement efforts on the following:

 § Senior Leadership for safety

 § Safe and reliable delivery of mental health care

 § Getting medicines right

 § Improving the physical care of patients

 § Delivering person and family centered care, alongside communication and team work, are integral to all aims of the programme.


Posters showing examples of our progress can be seen by clicking here


Sign up to Safety Campaign – Listen, Learn, Act.

In June 2014 the Secretary of State for Health launched a new campaign to make the NHS the safest healthcare system in the world.  The Sign up to Safety campaign has set out a three-year shared objective to save 6,000 lives and halve avoidable harm as part of the journey towards ensuring patients get harm free care every time, everywhere.

Listen, Learn, Act

Listening to patients, carers and staff, learning from what they say when things go wrong and take action to improve patients’ safety.

Sign up to Safety is designed to help realise the ambition of making the NHS the safest healthcare system in the world by creating a system devoted to continuous learning and improvement. This ambition is bigger than any individual or organisation and achieving it requires all NHS services to unite behind this common purpose to give patients confidence that we are doing all we can to ensure that the care they receive will be safe and effective at all times.

Sign up to Safety aims to deliver harm free care for every patient, every time, everywhere.  It champions openness and honesty and supports everyone to improve the safety of patients.

The Sign up to Safety campaign is for everyone in the NHS and 2gether NHS Foundation Trust has made a commitment to this campaign, through the following pledges:   

The five Sign up to Safety pledges

1.   Put Safety First: We will continue to demonstrate robust reporting of incidents across the trust whilst     reducing the level of harm caused to patients achievable through the South of England Improving Safety in Mental Health Collaborative. For example

  • Trust board members carry out patient safety visits to wards and teams twice a month to have conversations about patient safety directly with clinical staff. Any actions are then actively followed up.

  • Measures to reduce the number of people who ‘abscond’ from the Trust’s wards are being implemented.

  • Steps taken to reduce missed doses of medication have led to a 48 per cent reduction in such occurrences over a three year period.

  • Harm from falls in older adult inpatient areas have reduced by 50 per cent over a three year time period, due to the introduction of increased safety measures.

2.  Continually learn.We will continue to act on feedback from those who use our mental health services and their families/carers, alongside hearing our staff voices.  Measurement will continue to provide learning in terms of knowing how we are doing.  Through building capability and capacity to improve, we will continue to learn.  

3.  Honesty. We will develop and ensure that duty of candour guidance is implemented and that staff are supported to be candid with patients and their loved ones not just when something goes wrong, but to continue to be open regarding assessment and treatment.

4.  Collaborate: We will continue to take a leading role as an organisation within the South of England Improving Safety in Mental Health Collaborative, to support both local and regional learning.  We will continue to collaborate with our patients and their families regarding their care. 

5.  Support: We will continue to build a culture that supports staff to do the right thing, every time and to speak up when it may not be possible.  We will be open and share the learning of serious incidents and complaints. 

For more information you can visit the Sign up to Safety website by following the link https://www.england.nhs.uk/signuptosafety/



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