Nurse Awards

‘Ward rounds’ combined with education improve care home provision

A team of nurses is improving the health of older people living in care homes through a comprehensive staff training programme and ‘ward rounds’.

Tracy Means.  Picture credit: Jim Varney

A lack of investment in care staff training had led to poor care and a high incidence of pressure ulcers and preventable A&E visits and hospital admissions.

Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trust clinical team leader Tracy Means says: ‘We wanted to ensure residents were being cared for by the right people, with the right skills, in the right place, especially in the end of life phase.’

The team is a finalist in the Hallmark Care Homes-sponsored Nursing Older People category of the 2016 RCNi Nurse Awards.

The care home support team project delivers training focusing on areas including falls prevention, tissue viability and pressure ulcer prevention, dementia awareness, hydration and nutrition and end of life care.

The ward round enables clinical supervision of staff, who are supported to embed the training in their practice. As a result, there has been a huge increase in the use of advance care plans to help residents be managed in their preferred place of care.

Staff can now detect signs and symptoms of infections earlier and request antibiotics from GPs before to minimise risk of sepsis.

The project has reduced emergency department attendance by 12% and hospital admissions by 21%.

Tracy Means.  Picture credit: Jim Varney

Tracy says: ‘The team and I are committed to developing this service for residents in care homes.

‘The service is different to many run in other trusts, due to the combination of education and training running simultaneously with ward rounds.

‘It is more proactive then other services as it helps identify residents that need increased support in order for them to be managed at the right time, by the right person, in their preferred place of care.

‘It also ensures staff in the care homes have the right skills and knowledge to provide this care to some of the most vulnerable people in the community.’

About the sponsor

Hallmark Care Homes

Hallmark Care HomesHallmark Care Homes is one of the leading providers of high quality, relationship-centred care, with 15 beautifully furnished care homes across England and Wales. They are dedicated to providing quality environments and high standards of care, which enable residents to live life to the full. Hallmark Care Homes employ outstanding nurses that play a vital part in their care delivery. They provide exceptional career pathways for nurses from graduation through to senior managers, which include clinical and leadership programmes. If you’re thinking of a career move, give Hallmark Care Homes a call on 01277 314191 or visit