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Posted on Apr 24 2024 by Fiona Bailey

A Deputy Ward Manager in Birmingham has been praised by her team for her “commitment” after implementing several initiatives on her ward to boost efficiency and improve patient experience.

Shaida Begum, who has worked at St Andrew’s for eight years, is based on Hawkesley Ward. Shaida, has implemented a number of interventions on her ward to support the team to be clinically effective and to increase patient safety and satisfaction.

One of the first interventions she introduced is was what she calls ‘soft word flash cards’ which she designed herself based on the ‘soft word Safe Ward intervention’. The flash cards were designed to encourage theory into practise. The collection of cards feature a selection of words or phrases to use with patients when tackling challenging or difficult situations.

Shaida said: “I realised that a lot of the time incidents were occurring because the words we were using triggered a power battle like the word  ‘no’ for a patient this can be triggering and cause them upset due to feeling restricted or prompting a loss of control. So, I thought if we all started using words and phrases that sound more collaborative this might help placate patients.

“So if a patient asks if I can take them for a walk and I’m in the middle of completing an observation, instead of saying ‘no’, I would say ‘what about later on when the ward is less busy?’”

All staff on the ward now carry the cards and have started using them, and so far they seem to be having a positive effect.

Shaida has also implemented a Morning Request Board. This has been hung in the communal lounge and gives patients the opportunity to make requests about what they would like to do the following day. This means the next morning staff can check to see what has been asked for and plan accordingly. The intervention was designed to support her team to be clinically effective with the reduction in MHOST numbers while maintaining and increasing patient satisfaction and promoting independence and accountability.

Shaida said: “The patients have started to use it and it’s really boosted team efficiency as the patient requests are giving us a head start to the day. We don’t have to wait for them to wake up anymore, we can get ahead and start making plans. Because the patients are starting to see the benefits, they’re using the request board more and more.”

The third initiative that Shaida has introduced is a gratitude box for both staff and patients to use. This is to help all those on the ward to feel valued and appreciated.

Gerard Fogarty’s, Birmingham’s Associate Director of Nursing, said: “Shaida’s forward-thinking and commitment to our patients is a joy to hear and we’re thrilled to see how these small initiatives are making a big impact. Shaida is a credit to her team and a shining example of how quality nursing should look.

“The charity’s Annual Awards are coming up, and I hope Shaida’s colleagues think of her when they nominate. It’s so important we highlight and celebrate the staff who go above and beyond to make a real difference to patient lives.”