Round up for July 2019

Introduction to how we use evidence and evaluation for improvement

We created a motion graphic to introduce how evidence and evaluation can inform and support national improvement work with health, social care and housing partners.

Evidence exists in many forms and through our use of systematic searching and evidence review techniques we respond to a range of questions by bringing together and consolidating the best available evidence.

We also work to maximise the use of available evidence and data to assess how initiatives make an impact and share the learning across different programmes and services.

Using case studies to gain valuable insights into how improvement initiatives are making a difference

Improvement initiatives can be complex and context specific, with multiple factors contributing to how they work to influence outcomes. Our use of case studies is helping to capture insights into how different approaches to improvement are making a difference and the factors contributing to success so that learning can be transferred.

A multiple case study of the 'What matters to you?' initiative brought together what three healthcare organisations have been doing to encourage more meaningful conversations between people who provide health and social care and the people they support or care for. Sustaining the application of 'What matters to you?' in day-to-day practice can be challenging. A more in-depth exploration of how 'What matters to you?' is being applied in practice across different contexts of care delivery, allowed identification of the common factors contributing to success. This helped identify some of the barriers that can be encountered but also the opportunities to overcome them.

Another recent case study shares what East Ayrshire Heath and Social Care Partnership (HSCP) did to reduce the total time patients spend delayed in hospital with no more need for hospital care.

The report describes a number of improvement initiatives contributing to the success in reducing delayed discharge and how leadership and organisational culture acted as enablers. It is hoped that these findings can be used by other HSCPs to inform their work to reduce delayed discharge and the risks to patients that this brings.

Health economic analysis helping to answer questions about the new models of care 

The impact of new models care can take some time to establish but analysis along the way can offer valuable insights into how models are progressing to make a difference in relation to key outcomes. Health-economic analysis by the team is providing insights about the efficiency of new models of care through the use of routinely available data.

Work with HSC Moray after the introduction of this new model of community care piloted in Forres between 2017 and 2018 is an example of how existing data has been used to answer questions about impact and efficiency. The report from this work shares the analysis of the data over time for emergency admissions, 28-day readmission and average length of stay for people in the Forres area aged over 65, providing indications that the new model of care may be reducing hospital admissions with associated efficiency savings.

Further analysis will be required to determine whether this new model is delivering impact in the longer term but these results are helping to inform decisions about the continuation and development of the model.