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Improving Outpatient Services: National Summit

Wednesday 26 April 2017
De Vere West One Conference Centre, London

Improving Outpatient Services: National Summit

This event has now past, but there may well be news on the event including presentations and quotes from the day at our News pages here, a full list of our forthcoming events is available here.

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“outpatient services often struggle to provide a consistent standard of care, with services overlooked and not given enough priority at senior management and board level. This is reflected in our ratings for the core service, which show that 8% of services are inadequate for the key question ‘are services well-led?... In these cases, many outpatient services we inspected appeared to be organised around the needs of staff, not the needs of patients. Patients told us about their frustration about the frequent changing of their outpatient appointments. Clinics were often cancelled, sometimes at short notice, sometimes repeatedly. We saw many clinics that were running unacceptably late.” CQC, 2 March 2017 

The Care Quality Commission inspections into hospitals to date have reported that outpatients is one of the main areas that needs improvement.  44% percent of the outpatients services rated by the  Care Quality Commission NHS acute hospital, as at 31 July 2016 were rated either inadequate or requires improvement.  Urgent and emergency services received the highest number of inadequate ratings (9%), followed by outpatients and diagnostic imaging (8%) (CQC State of Care Report 2016).

Outpatient clinics can be demanding environments. This national summit aims to bring together leaders of outpatient services to focus on improvement and the delivery of outstanding outpatient care and experience. The conference opens with an update from the National  Digital Outpatients programme which aims to use digital solutions to empower patients to access outpatient services via their phones, laptops or tablets from checking test results to remote speech and language therapy (NHS Improvement 2016).

The conference continues with an extended in depth masterclass which will contact interactive group work focusing on Improving, capacity, access, patient flow and waiting times in outpatient services. Further sessions will focus on improving patient experience, improving outcomes in outpatient services, developing and implementing core standards and the developing role of virtual outpatient clinics in reducing pressure on outpatient services.  

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