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NSLHD Quality and Improvement Awards 2021

The Northern Sydney Local Health District Quality and Improvement Awards celebrate the excellence of our nurses, doctors, allied health professionals, support staff and researchers. The awards put a spotlight on the hard work and delivery of programs and services which have made a real difference to the patients and families we care for.


2021 NSLHD Quality and Improvement Award winners

Transforming the Patient Experience

Awarded to a project that has gone above and beyond to improve the patient, carer and family experience of a health service, clinic or visit.

Winner: End of Life Symbol, Palliative Care, Northern Sydney Local Health District


Delivering Value Based Integrated Care

To acknowledge an innovative project or program that encourage the delivery of integrated care.

Winner: The Deteriorating Resident Clinical Decision Tool (DETECT) Website, The Aged Care Rapid Response Team (ARRT), Beaches Rapid Access Care of the Elderly (BRACE) and Geriatric Rapid Acute Care Evaluation (GRACE)


Excellence in Supporting the Mental Health of our Patients and Consumers

Recognises and showcases innovation in improving the quality and safety of mental health care within programs.

Winner: Improving Carer Connection, Ryde Acute Team, North Shore Ryde Mental Health Service


Keeping People Healthy

In recognition of a project that has taken every opportunity to work in partnership with patients and consumers to build and maintain wellness.

Winner: Tobacco Dependence Management in a Smoke-Free Inpatient Drug and Alcohol Service, Inpatient Drug and Alcohol Service, Royal North Shore Hospital


Local Solutions

Recognises a project that have identified and implemented a local solution to meet the needs of their patients, consumers, carers or staff.

Winner: The ARRT of Telehealth, Aged Care Rapid Response team, Royal North Shore Ryde Service


Patient Safety First

In recognition of a project that demonstrates commitment to leadership that puts patient safety first, continual quality improvement and a focus on quality and safety in caring for our patients and consumers.

Winner: Towards Zero Falls @ Ryde, Falls Collaborative, Ryde Hospital


Supporting our People and Culture

To acknowledge the strong safety culture that underpins NSLHDs commitment to providing a safe working environment for all staff. 

Winner: A Time to Care – Supporting our CORE Casual Nursing Staff in Hornsby Mental Health, Mental Health Inpatient Units, Hornsby Hospital


Recovery and Resilience

Responding to our community's urgent needs to recover and rebuild in the wake of devastating natural disasters and a global pandemic.

Winner: Delivering Paediatric Speech Pathology via Telehealth with a COVID push, Speech Pathology, Child Youth and Family, Primary and Community Health


2021 NSLHD Quality and Improvement Award runners up

Transforming the Patient Experience

Meals Matter – Champions of Choice @ Macquarie, NSLHD and HealthShare

Group photo of Meals matter team


Macquarie Hospital staff along with HealthShare NSW worked on giving inpatients a choice of the food they could eat. They offered a two week rotating lunch and dinner menu and patients were able to choose what they wanted from a selection of full diet, diabetic diet, vegetarian and gluten free options. Not only was there increased patient satisfaction but there was an unexpected cost saving of approximately $20,000 per annum as food wastage was deemed to have reduced by 70 per cent.


Delivering Value Based Integrated Care

Reversing Frailty at Ryde, Community Aged Care and Rehabilitation Service (CAReS), Ryde Hospital

Group photo of Community Aged Care and Rehabilitation Service (CAReS) team, Ryde Hospital


After baseline data demonstrated that only four per cent of appropriate clients were screened for frailty, a collaborative approach was implemented to address non-compliance with clinical guidelines for frailty management. The team implemented a holistic approach involving staff and consumers that focused on innovative project solutions. The project resulted in 100 per cent of appropriate clients being screened for frailty, in addition to 100 per cent of staff being competent and confident in using the screening tool and pathway.


Excellence in Supporting the Mental Health of our Patients and Consumers

Earning our Stripes – A journey into culture improvement in the Adult Mental Health Unit, Adult Mental Health Unit, Hornsby Ku-ring-gai Hospital Mental Health Service

Group photo of Team stripes project team


The adult mental health team used the 'teamstripes' approach to improve their teamwork and communication within the multidisciplinary team to improve handovers, improve prevention and early intervention. The project resulted in an increase in consumers having care plans in place from 29 per cent to 100 per cent; 90 per cent of consumers and 83 per cent of carers had their goals and strategies documented.


Keeping People Healthy

Stepping On: Community Falls Prevention Program,  COVID Pivot, NSLHD Health Promotion

Group photo of Stepping On team


The team pivoted from their usual face-to-face community falls prevention program to a new way of working during the COVID-19 pandemic. The team supported older adults through this distressing and confusing time by providing correct COVID-19 information, participating in a virtual 'Stepping On' program pilot and supporting their NSLHD and CCLHD 'Stepping On' leaders.


Local Solutions

PIONEER: Improving access and care pathway for patients receiving radiation therapy for palliation by removing CT simulation, Northern Sydney Cancer Centre, NSLHD Cancer and Palliative Care Network

Group photo of pioneer program team


A local innovation recognised nationally and internationally, the Pioneer program utilises a patient’s pre-existing diagnostic CT scan to virtually design treatment plans for patients with advanced cancer, replacing the need for a dedicated CT scan simulation appointment. Significantly this has led to an effective, efficient re-design of more that 25 per cent of the department workload. Now a standardised approach, the program has shown to deliver positive clinical quality outcomes and exceeding 80 per cent in patient reported outcome measures.


Patient Safety First

Glucose Control Team: A proactive hospital-based initiative to improve glycaemic control in surgical inpatients, Glucose Control Team, Royal North Shore Hospital

Group photo of Glucose Control Team


The introduction of the Glucose Control Team at Royal North Shore hospital has shown to significantly improve peri-operative glucose management and reduce hyperglycaemia in surgical patients with diabetes mellitus admitted to hospital. This new model involves early identification of patients in need of timely diabetes specialist involvement. Gains have been sustained through the improvements in screening, referral pathways, education to patients and junior medical staff.


Supporting our People and Culture

Improving Patient Flow in an Outpatient Setting, Outpatient Project Team for Patient Queue Management System, Hornsby Hospital

Group photo of Outpatient Project Team


The Hornsby Hospital redevelopment saw the outpatient clinics move to a central location, rather than spread across the hospital. Being in the one location provided the opportunity to introduce a patient queue management system – a check-in kiosk and associated electronic communication tool – to outpatient areas to manage patient flow. Staff reported improved communication between administration and clinicians. The system allows time for clinicians to complete documentation or prepare for the next patient as they do not need to leave their clinic room between patients. Seventy per cent of patients presenting for an outpatient appointment used the kiosk to check in. Ninety-five per cent of those using it were happy with the experience.


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See our 2020 NSLHD Quality and Improvement Award finalists here.


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