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Our Services

Open & Honest Care

Choose Safer Care our approach to Open and Honest Care: Driving Improvements

We want to be open and honest with our patients, and accountable to the public and our patients and always driving improvements in care. We are part of the 'Open and Honest Care: Driving Improvements' programme and work with patients and staff to continuously implement quality improvements and all forms of harm that patients could possibly experience when they are in our care, however small. We will publish information about patient care and staff and patient experience so that patients and the public can see how we are performing in these areas. We began this process looking at our services in South Tyneside and we have now extended this to our district nursing services in Gateshead, Sunderland and South Tyneside.

Each month we work with other care providers to share what we have learned and to use this information to identify where changes can be made to improve care for the benefit of patients everywhere. This is best practice in modern NHS care and we are proud to be at the forefront of it.

Open and Honest Care Reports

Open and Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - October 2017

Open and Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - September 2017

Open and Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - August 2017

Open and Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - July 2017

Open and Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - June 2017

Open and Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - May 2017

Open and Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - April 2017

Open and Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - March 2017

Open and Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - February 2017

Open and Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - January 2017

Open and Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - December 2016

Open and Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - November 2016

Open and Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - October 2016

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - September 2016

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - August 2016

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - July 2016

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - June 2016

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - May 2016

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - April 2016

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - March 2016

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - February 2016

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - January 2016

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - December 2015

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - November 2015

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - October 2015

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - September 2015

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - August 2015

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - July 2015

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - June 2015

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - May 2015

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - April 2015

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - March 2015

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - February 2015

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - January 2015

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - December 2014

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - November 2014

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - October 2014

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - September 2014

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - August 2014

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - July 2014

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - June 2014

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - May 2014

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - April 2014

Open & Honest Care at your local NHS Trust - March 2014

Open & Honest Care at your Local Hospital - February 2014

Open & Honest Care at your Local Hospital - January 2014

Open & Honest Care at your Local Hospital - December 2013

Open & Honest Care at your Local Hospital - November 2013

Open & Honest Care at your Local Hospital - October 2013

Open & Honest Staffing

We understand the importance of providing high quality, safe and compassionate care and we need to ensure we have the right staff, with the right skills and attitude delivering the right care to our patients at the right time.

Our Board is fully committed to investing in nursing and midwifery staffing and has had a specific nurse staffing investment programme running for the last four years. An additional 60 nurses are being recruited from investment in 2013 / 2014, many of whom are highly trained as well as some new graduates.

Our Board looks in detail at nursing and midwifery and care staffing every 6 months and receives a monthly staffing report, which identifies any areas of risk and actions taken to ensure patient safety and quality care is maintained. We also use a range of patient safety information and patient and staff experience feedback on a continuous basis to assist us in looking at how we are performing overall and to ensure that any issues are identified early and acted on.

Presenting information about ward staffing is not straightforward. Staffing numbers alone do not present the whole picture. These need to be seen in the context of the numbers and complexity of patients on the ward at any particular time and of the skills of the staff on duty. There is therefore a word of caution about using the numbers as a measure of quality care. We constantly review patient dependency, staffing numbers and skill mix to make sure we can safely meet the care and standards required.

That said as part of a national development we are publishing information about our staffing numbers comparing the planned staffing and actual staffing by hospital. This is reported monthly to NHS England from June 2014. Our hospital level information is displayed on the following NHS Choices website pages:

Our hospital level information is displayed on the following NHS Choices website pages:

South Tyneside District Hospital
http://www.nhs.uk/Services/hospitals/Overview/DefaultView.aspx?id=659

Primrose Hill Hospital
http://www.nhs.uk/Services/hospitals/Overview/DefaultView.aspx?id=745

Elmville Unit at Monkton Hall
http://www.nhs.uk/Services/hospitals/Overview/DefaultView.aspx?id=187

St Benedict's Hospice
http://www.nhs.uk/Services/clinics/Overview/DefaultView.aspx?id=98019

We are also committed to providing this information by ward, with an explanation of what we are doing to ensure our wards and units are safely staffed.

Information is provided by ward for our planned Registered Nurses (or Registered Midwifes for maternity areas) and for Care Staff. We know how many hours we’ve planned against giving an actual percentage “fill rate” for each area, looking at day time and night time staffing. At this stage we are still developing this information and our figures do not reflect staff who move between wards to cover gaps for example where figures look like they are out of line with the plan we have tried to present a brief explanation as to why.

Open and Honest Staffing Reports

Open and Honest Care September 2016: Staffing Levels across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Open and Honest Care August 2016: Staffing Levels across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Open and Honest Care June 2016: Staffing Levels across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Open and Honest Care May 2016: Staffing Levels across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Open and Honest Care April 2016: Staffing Levels across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Open and Honest Care February 2016: Staffing Levels across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Open and Honest Care January 2016: Staffing Levels across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Open and Honest Care December 2015: Staffing Levels across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Open and Honest Care November 2015: Staffing Levels across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Open and Honest Care - October 2015: Staffing Levels across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Open and Honest Care September 2015: Staffing Levels across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Open and Honest Care August 2015: Staffing Levels and Safety, Quality, Experience indicators across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Staffing: Nursing, midwifery and care staff - July 2015

Open and Honest Care July 2015: Staffing Levels  across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Staffing: Nursing, midwifery and care staff - June 2015

Open and Honest Care June 2015: Staffing Levels  across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Staffing: Nursing, midwifery and care staff - May 2015

Open and Honest Care May 2015: Staffing Levels and Safety, Quality, Experience indicators across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Staffing: Nursing, midwifery and care staff - April 2015

Staffing: Nursing, midwifery and care staff - March 2015

Open and Honest Care – March 2015 Staffing Levels across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Staffing: Nursing, midwifery and care staff - February 2015

Open and Honest Care – February 2015 Staffing Levels across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Staffing: Nursing, midwifery and care staff - January 2015

Open and Honest Care – January 2015 Staffing Levels across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Staffing: Nursing, midwifery and care staff - December 2014

Open and Honest Care – December 2014 Staffing Levels across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Staffing: Nursing, midwifery and care staff - November 2014

Open and Honest Care – October2014 Staffing Levels across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Staffing: Nursing, midwifery and care staff - October 2014

Open and Honest Care – September 2014 Staffing Levels across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Staffing: Nursing, midwifery and care staff - September 2014

Open and Honest Care – August 2014 Staffing Levels across Nursing and Midwifery inpatient settings

Staffing: Nursing, midwifery and care staff - August 2014

Open and Honest Staffing Board Exception Report - August 2014

Staffing: Nursing, midwifery and care staff - July 2014

Open and Honest Staffing Board Exception Report - July 2014

Staffing: Nursing, midwifery and care staff - June 2014

Open and Honest Staffing Board Exception Report - June 2014

Staffing: Nursing, midwifery and care staff - May 2014

Open and Honest Staffing Board Exception Report - May 2014

Why our staffing levels may sometimes look “low”

There may be times when the fill rate is less than we had planned. This can be due to a number of reasons, for example due to staff sickness or absence, where we have a vacant post which we have not yet recruited into or when there is reduced activity or number of patients in an area, and therefore staffing is reduced or reallocated to another area. In brief whilst the fill rate may appear low we may have taken action to close the gap by temporarily moving staff and this is not yet reflected in our monthly report but we are working to include that and give a fuller picture as we go forward. However by reassurance, all patient safety systems ensure that all patient areas are constantly monitored to ensure that we have safe staffing to correct levels on duty at any particular time.

Why our staffing levels may sometimes look “high”

There may be times where the fill rates are higher than we had planned, for example when we have to bring in additional staff to meet a specific patient’s needs. Again this is something we keep under constant review.

Information about staffing levels when visiting our wards

Each ward has a staffing status board, which shows the planned and actual number of registered nurses and care staff such as auxiliary nurses on each shift during the day and night. The board can be clearly seen by patients, visitors and staff and also identifies who is in charge of the shift.

Have you got a question about staffing levels?

If you would like to discuss the information provided or have a question about the staffing levels please contact Dr Bob Brown, Director of Nursing, Allied Health Professionals and Patient Safety bob.brown@stft.nhs.uk

Or if you would prefer please contact our Customer Services department customer.services@stft.nhs.uk telephone 0191 404 1072 and they will put you in contact with the appropriate member of staff.