As theatre teams strive to tackle the backlog, cognitive, social and personal resource skills will have a vital role to play in helping to deliver safe, efficient care, in challenging circumstances. Kate Woodhead RGN DMS discusses the importance of understanding human factors and the need to develop key skills to support effective teamworking.
What we are striving for in healthcare are safe, efficient and timely activities for patients and staff – particularly in the postCOVID era, where there is so much catching up to do. There are never ending challenges to providing this, not least the complex care needs of an increasingly elderly population and a staffing crisis, as vacancies mount and burnout means many more are leaving the professions. Responding to these challenges requires the focus of everyone involved in the recovery from COVID-19, in order to tackle the backlog of care and surgery.
It is understood that around 6.48 million people are waiting for treatment and that demand has recently ‘skyrocketed’.1 It has also been reported, recently, that ambulance pick-up times have lengthened considerably and waits for triage in emergency departments are long. We have heard, and felt, that there are more than one hundred thousand vacancies among the professions, increasing the stress experienced by those left behind. This is perhaps the greatest set of challenges that the NHS has ever faced.
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