A project to make Auburn Hospital more welcoming and safe to Aboriginal patients took out the ‘Transforming Patient Experience’ category at the Western Sydney Local Health District 2020 Quality Awards.
Auburn Hospital provides care to patients from diverse backgrounds, however, it was identified that a small percentage of patients were identifying as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islanders.
Hospital staff set themselves a task to increase the number of patients who identify as Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander to the hospital by 50 per cent by February 2020.
A plan was developed that addressed environmental changes, cultural competency training and engagement with the broader Aboriginal community.
The results showed a 62 per cent increase in the number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients presenting to the hospital, improved staff understanding and better linkages with the Aboriginal community.
Auburn Hospital acting Quality and Accreditation manager and project lead Sally Henderson said a number of strategies were implemented to achieve these results.
“This included staff training and education, a range of visual symbols were installed in the hospital including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander flags, maps of Indigenous Australia, a Welcome to Country video on all patient screens and Aboriginal artwork,” Sally said.
“Identifying Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients earlier staff can link patients into the appropriate services and assess for known risk factors such as diabetes. This can lead to improved health outcomes.”
The ‘Just Ask It’ project was coordinated by Auburn Hospital surgical ward nurse unit manager Riki Richards, WSLHD Aboriginal training coordinator Kristy Kendrigan, Aboriginal liaison officer Narelle Holden, nursing and midwifery director Kate Murphy, clinical support officer Jaclyn Mobbs, administration manager Lidiya Malinov and outpatients department nurse unit manager Tanja Nietlisbach.
Congratulations to all team members!
The WSLHD Quality Awards 2020 broadcast (42-minute duration) can be viewed by clicking here.