By Sam Wilson
It’s nice to be back behind the keyboard talking about my experience of life on a ward. In this blog I want to mull over some thoughts about sharing news and ideas with other staff members and patients in your ward community.
But let me start with a story about how far Star Wards news and ideas can travel. Our bumper 1st Birthday Imagine Newsletter has an item about our colonial cousins in Australia who features Wardipedia’s “Pointless National Holidays” on the ‘Glam Adelaide’ Website. We also saw a lovely Facebook post about an exercise session at Harrison House, which was later shared on twitter by Ellie from the fabulous Navigo Health and Social Care Trust. With the explosion of Social Media in recent years, sharing information, pictures and experiences has become far easier and more accessible. There’s no need to be a whizz on the PC or Tablet to share positive news, anyone can do it.
On wards, Community Meetings, Peer Supervision, Team Days are all buzz words for the sharing of news and ideas. This information sharing helps staff and patients to work more cohesively. The important part of all of these forums is that sharing experience is about discussing the positives of ward working as well as airing negatives that may need addressing.
A really effective idea I’ve experienced in a Peer Supervision meeting was when positive comments from patient feedback forms were shared with staff. Written on a flipchart and displayed as part of the meeting, staff were able to see that their work was often seen as positive by patients. This meant the meeting was able to talk about what needed to be improved with an appreciation of what was working well. As Henry Steward says in The Happy Manifesto, “make your people feel good” and it is possible to do this even if you are talking about what needs to change. http://happymanifesto.com/
As well as staff being able to share their experiences, Community Meetings, Morning Socials and a favourite of mine the ‘Chat Over a Cuppa’ (or “Chat over a Brew” to our glorious northern members) are forums where patients can talk openly about their experiences. Admittedly, this can sometimes be a general moan about ward life, but in meetings I have attended there are often positive comments about the how caring the staff are, how tasty ward the food is and even how the vibrant ward decor or the fun activities happening on the ward are appreciated.
Here at Star Wards we would love to hear how if you have developed your ward meetings for staff and patients, including any changes that “make your people feel good”. Stories (and pictures) that involve cake get a big thumbs up from me and a tail wag from Buddy!
Part of my job as the Imagine newsletter editor is to truffle out all the good news happening on Star Wards member wards. It’s an absolute pleasure to do so. Here is a gentle reminder about our Facebook (search ‘Star Wards’) and Twitter pages (@starwards, @wardipedianews). So do tell us what is happening at your end. If you would like to you can also drop me an email to [email protected] I would be delighted to hear from you.
…and who knows, your news may even reach as far as Australia!
Imagine Newsletter Editor