New ‘patient flow’ initiative replaces Hospital Redesign Programme

Paul Mulholland | 16 Mar 2017 | 0 Comment(s)

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The Irish Hospital Redesign Programme (IHRP), a quality improvement initiative aimed at facilitating patient flow through hospitals, has been disbanded, the Medical Independent (MI) has confirmed.

The IHRP, which was launched in 2014, aimed to improve patient flow and access to emergency care in the hospital system.

It was based on a performance improvement programme that the former HSE Director of Acute Hospitals Dr Tony O’Connell had previously implemented during his time as Director General of Queensland public health services in Australia.

The IHRP was intended to support local change and innovation, with external support and expertise provided by the Special Delivery Unit (SDU) and the HSE’s Clinical Care Programmes.

Although it was originally planned to run in a number of hospitals, the programme was ultimately never implemented anywhere outside the pilot site, which was Tallaght Hospital, Dublin.

A HSE spokesperson told MI that a number of IHRP initiatives were, and continue to be, rolled-out in Tallaght Hospital.

MI has previously reported on the delays in implementing the IHRP in other hospitals in line with the original plan for the initiative.

The HSE has now decided not to progress the IHRP and instead has rolled-out another project, entitled the National Patient Flow Improvement Programme, which is also aimed at improving the movement and management of patients through the hospital system.

The Executive’s spokesperson said the initial sites chosen for the project, which again seeks to reduce pressure on emergency departments and hospital wards nationwide, are University Hospital Limerick and Galway University Hospital.

The HSE did not provide any information about when — or if — this new programme would be expanded beyond these two hospitals. 

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