Red tape solution sought in hospitals
WAYS to cut red tape for frontline hospital staff, have been devised after consultation which included Ipswich Hospital.The hospital at Heath Road, Ipswich, was one of 37 NHS trusts and other stakeholders to be visited by the Cabinet Office Regulatory Impact Unit working with the Department of Heath.
By TRACEY SPARLING
health and education editor
WAYS to cut red tape for frontline hospital staff, have been devised after consultation which included Ipswich Hospital.
The hospital at Heath Road, Ipswich, was one of 37 NHS trusts and other stakeholders to be visited by the Cabinet Office Regulatory Impact Unit working with the Department of Heath.
A total of 250 health service staff were asked what the problem areas were, and as a result 40 measures have been produced which aim to slice through red tape and cut hours spent on administration.
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The 'Making a Difference: Reducing Burdens in Hospitals' report is the result of a nine-month project.
The range of improvements which would free up staff time to focus on patient care and hospital standards include:
n Issuing national guidance to enable nurses to administer intravenous therapy and request medical tests and investigations.
n Delivering practical help to support locally integrated approaches to patient discharge arrangements.
n Reducing the time taken for nurse re-registration to a maximum of eight weeks.
Lord Hunt, Minister of Health, launched the report yesterday and said: "These are just the sort of measures we need to root out red tape and enable front-line staff to concentrate on caring for patients.
"Our NHS Plan sets out the government's vision for modernising and rebuilding the NHS and ensuring we have a health service where patients are at the centre of safe and high quality care. We need to ensure that working methods are not over complicated or unnecessarily burdensome.
"This report brings together practical measures suggested by front line staff across the country. A ward sister from the South East with 15 years experience, explained how she could save four to five hours per week if medical notes were better organised and indexed as a matter of course."