Improvement collaborative

The Improvement Collaborative programme has been set up to work with key stakeholders to define what the future approach to increasing London’s capacity for quality improvement should include and what the future support for improvement across London needs to address.

Healthy London Partnership is working with Academic Health Science Networks (AHSNs), Health Education England, NHS Improvement, commissioners and providers to design an effective platform to enhance quality improvement capacity, capability and culture across London’s NHS.   

Why collaborate?

There is a pressing need to consider how we can build capacity and capability in quality improvement techniques and create learning organisations that collaborate to make best practice common practice for patients across the capital.   

High quality healthcare increasingly hinges on the outcome of multiple decisions across a range of settings and teams. Consequently clinicians and managers need to have the knowledge and skills necessary to improve the quality of care and to work safely and effectively as part of a team and across the healthcare system.

There are some outstanding examples of leadership and quality improvement approaches in health services in the UK and abroad and evidence shows that it can improve patient experience and outcomes and bring financial and productivity benefits to the organisation. 

However evidence from publications by The Kings Fund, Health Foundation, Rose Review and Smith Report, amongst others, show that variable leadership and quality improvement knowledge and skills amongst clinicians and managers is a significant barrier to improving quality, safety and efficiency in healthcare with many unfamiliar with quality improvement approaches such as lean or PDSA cycles.

Why are we doing this now?

We need to accelerate the improvement of quality, efficiency and transformation of care models. London has been divided into five areas charged with the delivery of the Five Year Forward View. These Strategic Transformation Plan (STP) footprints will create “health system sustainability and transformation plans” which will outline how providers and commissioners in each area deliver nine “must do” performance targets, achieve financial balance, improve quality and efficiency and transform the way care is delivered.

Sustainability and transformation funding has been agreed but it is predicated on the achievement of performance against the above challenges. Delivery of these targets requires whole-system solutions and an increase in capacity and capability for front-line service improvement within trusts. 

What are we doing?

We are conducting a series of interviews with key stakeholders as well as distributing and assessing a questionnaire to gather baseline information on quality improvement approaches in London.

A deliberative event was held on 20 April in collaboration with London’s three AHSNs and Health Education England. Commissioners, providers and improvement leads from across London, along with leaders in the field of quality improvement.

The event revealed the results of the interviews and questionnaire as well as showcase examples of best practice from healthcare and other industries. It will provide an opportunity to discuss what needs to be done to build leadership and a culture that understands and values quality improvement across London’s healthcare system. We will also work with everyone to define what the future approach to increasing London’s capacity for quality improvement should include and what additional support is needed.

Speakers included Chris Ham from the Kings Fund, Mark Ebbens (GE Aviation) and Estelle Clarke (Chartered Quality Institute) with a broad set of case studies from the NHS where quality improvement has led to significant changes.

Get involved

We’d like to hear from you if you are involved in quality improvement from a health commissioner, health provider or education body perspective. You could help to shape the interventions we design for 2016/17 and beyond.   

Email david.groom1@nhs.net to register your interest.