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Active Caring for Everyone: a patient experience capability programme, for multiple clinical and non-clinical disciplines, across multiple locations, resulting in increased staff and patient satisfaction

The expectations of patients is continually rising from the multitude of experiences they get from other parts of their life – shopping, travel, banking… The challenge for the NHS is that many patients can’t tell if the actual clinical or technical care they get is right or wrong, so they base their perceptions on the human, physical and emotional care and service they get around that clinical health care intervention.  They also measure it through the different interactions they have along the way, and take good or bad experiences from one interaction into the next.  The challenge is, how do you make that care consistent across a range of providers and across a range of disciplines.  And how do you help each of those people feel they are all working towards the same unifying goal of what great care looks and feels like.

The Challenge

The Herefordshire and Worcestershire Locality Board approached Impact Innovation to collaborate together to:

  • Deliver a programme of training to equip staff with core skills and competencies to improve patient perceptions and experience as well as the staff experience, ensuring the programme links into regional and national strategies

  • Embed a culture focused around the patient experience including skills, competencies, behaviours and values

  • Encourage innovative approaches to customer service / patient perception development that involves a blended learning approach

  • Review and evaluate the success of the programme in the identified areas

The programme

Active Caring for Everyone (ACE) is a capability development programme for a variety of staff, across all disciplines.  Its aim: to create a confident team, who are united and proud of the services they deliver, who can recognise and exceed all patient service expectations, and together, can deliver a patient and staff experience that they would be delighted to receive themselves.


At the heart of the programme was the need to positively engage a diverse NHS workforce including Managers, Matrons, HCAs, Nurses, Physiotherapists, Support and Administrative staff across the range of NHS organisations including Community hospitals, Acute hospitals and Mental Health trusts.


Through a structured process of insight gathering, vision creation, ideas generation, concept design and pilot of training, the programme team designed 3 development streams with specific training aimed at Service Leaders (Ward Managers/Team Leaders/Ward Coordinators), Service Role Models (termed Trailblazers, to help to sustain the programme) and then sessions for all team members.   Each of these interventions were designed to fit in with the busy working lives of the different groups, including techniques that could train people whilst actively on their shift.


The final stages of the programme were led by the Locality Board.  These were focused on sustaining and embedding the development from the programme by targeting them into specific business -as-usual practices across locality, i.e. into appraisals, recruitment processes and induction.


Patient feedback highlighted that the specific outcomes that patients said were most important to them, and which consequently impacted patient perception, were not sufficiently measured.  Therefore, a new measures approach, which took into account feedback via PALS, as well as comparing the number of complaints vs. compliments pre programme to post programme, was trialled.  Evaluation also utilised staff survey results.  A new staff feedback system, called Pulse Dynamics, was also trialled to determine the role of situational feedback.

“I will be putting ACE into all my future clinical practice – well done, 10/10!”


Clinical Service Leader

“A really fun learning experience that has improved my confidence and ability to talk to patients and team members.”


“It’s made me look at what we do and how we can change the good things we do into fantastic experiences.”


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