New scheme to ensure patients get information

Wards in Lincolnshire hospitals are trying out a new way of making sure their patients get all of the information they need about their hospital stay.

Placemats are being printed with important information and then used at patients’ bedsides to share information with them about visiting times, contact numbers and who’s who on the ward, among other things.

This approach to patient communication is being piloted in nine wards across hospitals run by United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust– including those in Lincoln, Grantham and Boston.

It has won an award from the Academy of Fab NHS Stuff, recognising small changes that make a big difference to patient care.

The information can be tailored to each ward, and as the mats are on all the bedside tables, they can be accessed by every patient.

In addition, a small card has also been developed to work alongside the placemats.

Each card has the name of the ward manager, the ward’s direct contact number and visiting hours, to be handed out to relatives and carers.

Patient experience and engagement manager Sharon Kidd said: “We all know a patient’s time in hospital can be a worrying and stressful experience, often influenced by whether they feel well-informed. One way of improving patients’ experiences is to provide clear communication and access to information regarding the ward. The aim of the ward information placemats is to improve the experience in hospital by providing patients with information about their stay, ward routine, who will see them and other helpful information.”