Professionalism in Healthcare has been and continues to be practiced in all of our BSHS locations: The aim of our “Professionalism in Healthcare strategy” is to increase awareness of its importance, and its intimate links to patient safety. Professionalism in Healthcare has been identified nationally and internationally for many years as an important component of practice for healthcare professionals.
The BSHS has demonstrated a strong commitment to professionalism in healthcare at an organisational level with the recent appointment of a Professor of Medical Professionalism jointly with the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI). Professionalism in Healthcare is synergistic with the mission, vision and values of the BSHS including respect, justice, integrity, stewardship, innovation, compassion and quality.
Multiple definitions of Professionalism in Healthcare exist: it has been described as “how we justify the trust of our patients, colleagues and community to do the right thing, in the right way, for the right reasons and in a timely manner”
The Royal College of Surgeons of Ireland (RCSI) has highlighted that professionalism involves “forming values, attitudes and behaviours which foster professional relationships, promote public trust and enhance patient safety”. It explains that as Healthcare Professionals we should be committed to “compassion, communication, self-care, cultural sensitivity, altruism,’ advocacy, ethical practice, evidence based practice, team work, integrity, honesty and reflective practice”. A patient centred service and aiming for excellence is central to professionalism, to care delivered at the BSHS and an integral part of our 2020 plan.
Figure 1: Commitments central to professionalism in healthcareProfessor Michael Brennan, Professor of Medicine at the Mayo Medical School and Consultant Endocrinologist at Mayo Clinic in Minnesota, USA
This professionalism extends to all staff and is part of every person’s responsibility. Key staff groups include doctors, nurses and health care professionals: these will form part of our initial plan.
Our programme has been developed with patient centred care and professionalism at its heart: Advanced Medicine, Exceptional Care. Our recent patient and staff surveys are testament to this.
Professionalism can be improved by developing a stronger culture of professionalism in our healthcare system because culture drives safe care delivery. Culture is about behaviours.
SYSTEMS + BEHAVIOURS = OUTCOMES
Pillars of professionalism in healthcare include:
Professionalism in Healthcare is embedded in our 2020 Plan, of which multiple initiatives are underway and others are due to commence. Key elements of our 2020 plan rooted in professionalism include our patient survey, staff survey, Joint Commission International accreditation, the leadership programme for BSHS staff run by RCSI and our quality improvement projects involving multiple-disciplines. It is a key part of our Quality and Safety Strategy.
Professionalism in Healthcare and the values of the BSHS are synergistic.
Investment in Professionalism in Healthcare at both an organisational and individual level leads to benefits for the patient, staff and healthcare enterprise. These include:
The culture of Professionalism in Healthcare can be improved through the triad of education, leadership and accountability. A culture and awareness of Professionalism in Healthcare can be increased through the combination of the following:
This will be implemented through collaboration with all key groups across all sites and have a bottom up and top down approach.