The Official Delivery Partners of the NACAP QI Projects

A Case Study

In order to change National audit data that has largely remained the same for decades, ICST were approached by the Royal College of Physicians and the NACAP audit team to develop and implement quality improvement in practice.

Background to the project

A partnership between the RCP, NACAP, ICST and NHS Wales to help deliver policy to patient, ICST developed 6 peer reviewed QI projects addressing patient diagnosis and care with greatest value for patients with COPD and asthma.

The journey of success:

Customising the innovation for the environment

Although ICST’s toolkits are ‘ready to go’ for a general audience, there is a process to optimise the innovation for the environment in which it is being implemented. 

Establishing the teams
Identification of those who would be involved in the development of the innovations (the innovation team), the team who would oversee the governance of the process and content (the governance team) and the team that would oversee the implementation of the innovation into the system (the implementation team).
Alignment and awareness campaign

As part of ICST’s implementation methodology, the active alignment of key stakeholders, or people with influence in the system, is key to ensure that there are no barriers to implementation. 

Testing the toolkit
A representative sample of users were recruited to test the toolkit and make sure it was real-world compliant. The feedback from this process highlighted a few areas of improvement that we addressed before proceeding with the formal launch. 

Ongoing implementation success:

Continuous optimisation of the toolkit

Throughout the implementation, ICST monitors the uptake and engagement of the innovation, as well as survey data and feedback from the audience. The findings from this help inform further development work, ensuring that the QI projects continue to be optimised for the audience. 

Active implementation work
During active implementation, ICST leads the implementation team towards implementation success, monitoring a whole range of proven implementation factors (we call them Enablers), to ensure that the value is realised for this implementation project.

Barriers overcome

Alignment resources
In order to for frontline teams to complete a QI project, they usually need some support from senior members of their team who will allocate them time to complete the work.
For the QI project, ICST developed resources to help individuals communicate the importance of the QI project, including some presentation slides.
Removing barriers at every stage
Resources have been produced, to make the QI project as easy as possible for busy healthcare professionals, including Read and SNOMED codes, clinical guidelines, email templates and information leaflets for patients.
These resources are part of the programme, freely accessible to all users.
Capacity calculator
For a busy healthcare professional, Quality Improvement needs to fit in with their other clinical work, so they needed a way to calculate how many QI tasks were possible in the time they have available.
ICST developed a capacity calculator, where individuals can enter how much time they have available to commit to this QI project, how much time each task will take, and the calculator will estimate how many QI tasks they will achieve.

“This is a modern and efficient mechanism to integrate national audit with quality improvement activity to improve patient outcomes”

Dr Katherine Hickman, GP and Primary Care Clinical Lead for the Royal College of Physician’s National Asthma and COPD Audit Programme

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“The plans have led the way in embedding quality improvement in respiratory care, focusing on self-management and digital solutions to modernise treatment pathways”

Joseph Carter, Head of Devolved Nations, Asthma and Lung UK

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For more information, check out the Respiratory Toolkit product page