Bernard Quinn (no relation) is the programme director for NHS improvement and in this article he explains how the regulator is looking into ways hospitals can improve their patient journeys.
Technology can be very healthy for hospitals and the kind Bernard references in this article can be paid for within several months of implementation, impacting the experiences of millions of people.
It is all about better orchestration of existing resources. Nurses and Doctors train to care for patients, not to spend time as administrators chasing porters, beds and transport. Healthy hospitals are looking at ways to do more with their existing resources, but it isn't about cost. That's a happy side product of a better experience for patients and staff.
Here in 2016 - we really need to look at this.
One area we are especially interested in is seeing how hospitals manage patient journeys and how they can use digital operational systems to do things differently. Use of workflow management systems is well developed in the industrial sector where process planning, scheduling and flow control software are routinely used. This approach is beginning to move into the healthcare sector and we are keen to see how it can be used to improve patient experience. We have seen examples of how quality of care, capacity, costs, planning, leadership or processes (to name a few) can be improved. But rarely do we come across an innovation that addresses all these, and rarer still is an innovation that potentially results in a 10-25% gain in bed capacity across emergency and elective systems.