Quality improvement programme targets finance professionals

19 December 2017

The HFMA and NHS Future-Focused Finance (FFF) are collaborating with NHS Improvement’s ACT Academy to launch an improvement programme specifically designed for NHS finance staff.

The academy’s Quality, Service Improvement and Redesign (QSIR) programme, aims to give finance staff at all levels the skills to design, and implement projects to improve productivity and efficiency together with clinical or operational colleagues,

The five-day programme – spread over five months – covers established tools and techniques. Finance professionals are encouraged to attend with a clinical or service management colleague. Over the duration of the programme, the pairs will work on a real project in their own organisation or local system, allowing them to quickly apply what they have learnt.

Participants will be given up-to-date tools and techniques in service improvement and redesign to enable them to initiate, develop and implement quality improvement projects. Other objectives include giving them the confidence to lead others to plan and deliver quality and service improvement projects and ensure such projects are linked to patient care and/or organisational aims.

The curriculum covers eight areas, including:

  • Leading improvements
  • Project management
  • Measurement for improvement
  • Sustainability of improvement
  • Engaging and understanding others
  • Creativity in improvement
  • Process mapping
  • Demand and capacity

Announcing the programme at the HFMA annual conference in December alongside plans for a new Lean institute, NHS Improvement’s director of improvement Adam Sewell-Jones (pictured) urged finance professionals to get on board, saying the programme would ‘bring finance people and clinicians together to skill them up in quality improvement and improve patient outcomes.’Adam Sewell Jones 293170

In a workshop during the conference, programme advocate Jenny Davis encouraged finance practitioners to get involved with quality improvement. The former NHS finance professional now works in quality improvement at Basildon And Thurrock University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust as programme director for clinical redesign and reconfiguration for the MSB Group – covering Basildon, Mid Essex Hospitals and Southend University Hospital.

‘This is a real opportunity to get finance professionals involved and give you the skill sets that will help in your day jobs,’ she said. ‘But it will also help me as an improvement person because I need finance people to support the improvement agenda.’

She said the programme could help to change the conversation around efficiency improvement, moving discussions away from reducing service spend to optimising protocols of care. She added that finance professionals were ideally suited to quality improvement activities because of their analytical and measurement skills. Their background in evidence-based decision making also means they are a highly-valued part of any team.

QSIR is open to NHS finance staff at all levels in England and will begin in March.  Applications should be made online before the deadline of 15 January.  Any queries can be directed to sarah.crick@hfma.org.uk