The second cohort of Clinical Excellence Queensland Improvement Fellows commenced this week. A talented and passionate group of eleven fellows from diverse backgrounds across medical, allied health, nursing and midwifery were selected from a competitive field of more than 80 applicants.
Dr John Wakefield met with the group this week as they commenced their journey in rethinking healthcare and how it can be improved from a perspective of safety and quality improvement. Over the next year the fellows will undertake learning in a diverse range of areas related to quality improvement including the implementation and improvement sciences, human factors, behaviour change management, complexity science and systems thinking, leadership skills, patient safety, and patient-centred care. In addition, the fellows will explore and debate modern viewpoints on improving safety in healthcare including Safety 2 and Resilient Healthcare.
They will continue in their clinical roles throughout the fellowship so that their learnings occur within the context of the real-world environment and through the lens of frontline clinical work.
The fellows will undertake an improvement project which has the capacity to significantly improve patient outcomes. Initiatives include improving access to high risk foot services across Queensland (specifically in rural and remote areas), and improving patient access to appropriate pain relief through good opioid stewardship.
For more information on each of the fellows please see their brief bios below:
Sarah is a Senior Podiatrist based at Mount Isa Hospital, North West Hospital and Health Service. Through her fellowship she will evaluate the impact of funding committed to ambulatory high-risk foot services, specifically rural and remote hospital and health services. Sarah is passionate about equity and access to services for all Queenslanders, having established a teleahealth-supported podiatry service for the North West HHS which partners with other agencies within North West Queensland to improve clinical outcomes.
Matthew is a Consultant General Surgeon and the Clinical Lead of the Acute Surgical Unit at Logan Hospital, Metro South Hospital and Health Service. Matthew is also the hospital supervisor for general surgical training and holds clinical governance and research roles within the hospital. He is currently involved in the Future Hospital Program (FHP) at Logan Hospital, which is a 10-year transformational strategy encompassing person-centred care, workforce capability, continuous quality improvement, research and innovation, and safety and reliability. This work has led to a keen interest in continuous quality improvement, and he is undertaking the fellowship to further develop knowledge and understanding in this area.
Leigh is a Rural Allied Health Manager at The Townsville Hospital, Townsville Hospital and Health Service, and looks after multidisciplinary teams across a number of sites. As a physiotherapist himself, Leigh has worked in multiple rural settings around Queensland. In his current role he implemented two allied health rural generalist positions focused on service improvement. Leigh has also implemented six allied health assistant positions under a telehealth-supported delegation model, thus increasing access to services for people living in rural settings. Another key focus has been to improve collaboration between the Townsville HHS and the local Primary Health Network, pioneering an integrated workforce model to improve access and efficiency. Looking forward, Leigh hopes to promote a culture of positive disruption within his health service and challenge his colleagues to think outside the box in solving complex challenges.
Georga is Director Clinical Training, Medical Education Unit at the Princess Alexandra Hospital, Metro South Hospital and Health Service. She holds a fellowship of the Royal Australasian College of Medical Administrators and the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners. Georga is interested in bringing together the principles of quality improvement, reliability, education and communication to redesign systems of care, particularly when information transfer and handover is required.
Denise is a General Physician and Geriatrician at the Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital, Metro North Hospital and Health Service. She is part of the Residential Aged Care District Assessment and Referral team or RADAR, which is developing innovative service delivery models for the healthcare of residents from nursing homes across Metro North.
Anne is a Nurse Navigator (Stroke / Generalist) at Mackay Base Hospital, Mackay Hospital and Health Service. Anne has worked in various Australian jurisdictions and internationally. Currently Anne is working with clinicians to improve acute stroke care processes.
Champs is the Quality Use of Medicines Pharmacist at Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital, Metro North Hospital and Health Service. In her current role she has been working on a number of initiatives aimed at improving opioid prescribing locally, which have resulted in several successful practice changes. This led to the development of the Opioid Prescribing Toolkit (OPT) which aims to assist other facilities to introduce concepts of Opioid Stewardship. Practice improvement is the result of frontline clinicians undertaking quality improvement activities and co-desinging the interventions. They are involved in every aspect of the projects including the overall evaluation and redesign where necessary.
In addition to anticipated clinical, operational and patient experience benefits stemming from improved opioid prescribing, OPT will build improvement capability in the clinical areas that adopt it. OPT includes education on effective project planning and improvement and implementation science tools and strategies.
Scott is a Paediatric Emergency Physician working in the Sunshine Coast Hospital and Health Service. He's currently involved in the Clinical Excellence Queensland Sepsis Breakthrough Collaborative and holds the Quality Portfolio for Paediatric Emergency Medicine within the SCHHS region.
Jeanette Tyler is a registered nurse, registered midwife and International Board Certified Lactation Consultant. In 2016, she was the recipient of the Sir Ian McFarlane Award for Excellence in Clinical Nursing Practice. Jeanette’s current substantive position is Clinical Nurse/Midwifery Consultant (CN/CM) - Service Improvement in Women’s and Newborn Services at the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital. She is currently acting in the Clinical Nurse Consultant (CNC) - Safety and Quality role.
Ashlea is a senior Occupational Therapist, allied health lead and researcher from the Gold Coast Hospital and Health Service. Ashlea has successfully won grant funding to lead or facilitate implementation of several innovative initiatives in recent years including LIFE Space, and novel upper limb training devices including the SMART Arm and Saebo. Ashlea has experience designing, implementing and evaluating new models of care including the Allied Health Led Neurology Outpatient Service and the Robina Hospital Rehabilitation Response Team. Ashlea is the principal investigator of the SMART Arm implementation research studies.
Kate has a midwifery and child health nursing background and is currently the Nurse Project Manager - NUM MUM Project at the Children's Health Queensland Hospital and Health Service. Kate’s various roles have included quality and safety portfolios and undertaking improvement projects using nursing metrics (obtained via audit processes) and supporting the implementation of nurse sensitive indicators at Queensland Children’s Hospital. Kate is passionate about clinical improvement processes, and supporting her peers to understand and value quality improvement as a tool to positively drive change in their workplaces.
We wish all of our new fellows the best of luck in the journey ahead. For more information on this innovative program, please contact the program coordinator.
PICTURED ABOVE (FRONT L-R): Linda McCormack, Kate Whelan, Denise Hobson, Anne Hooper, Jeanette Tyler, Sarah Bohan, Champika Pattullo, Michelle Padget, Melissa Marriott. (BACK L-R): Georga Cooke, Matthew Burstow, Scott Schofield, John Wakefield, Ashlea Walker, Leigh Burton, Michael Tresillian.