The purpose of the NHS is to deliver high quality, safe and clinically effective care to all. However, being a high-risk industry, decision making can often be compromised when staff are required to react quickly under pressure and in unpredictable circumstances, which can often impact quality of care, patient outcomes and potentially cause harm.
We need to ensure that staff are equipped with an understanding of the effects of teamwork, tasks, equipment, workspace, culture and organisation on human behaviour and can apply that knowledge in clinical settings, in order to consistently deliver high quality care. Integrating a human Factors approach is a way to achieve this; it underpins current patient safety and quality improvement science, offering an integrated, evidenced and coherent approach to patient safety, quality improvement and clinical excellence. Human factors is a scientific discipline used in many other safety critical industries and by embedding ergonomics into everyday practice, the NHS can minimise or mitigate human frailties, thus reducing error and preventable harm.
This award will recognise teams or organisations that have introduced human factors training initiatives or embedded an ergonomics approach to every day practice, with demonstrable results showing a reduction of human error and higher quality of care.
Entries are welcome from across the NHS and public sector health and social care system.