Introduction of Excellence Reporting to City Hospitals Sunderland: The first six months (#2496)

Idea Description
Overview of Innovation:
Discover: Safety in healthcare has focused on avoiding harm by learning from errors. Excellence in healthcare is highly prevalent but there is a lack of formal systems to capture it. Adrian Plunkett and colleagues at Birmingham Children’s Hospital recognised this and created a system of Excellence Reporting with the aims of identifying, appreciating, studying and learning from episodes of excellence (

We introduced a similar system of Excellence Reporting at Sunderland Royal Hospital on the 14/2/17. This takes the form of an online reporting tool. The form captures: Who was excellent? What did they do? What does the reporter think we can learn from this? Those reported receive a verbatim copy of the episode of excellence personally signed by the hospital CEO.

The system is designed to redress the balance between reporting of errors and recording episodes of excellence. It is hoped that we can create new opportunities for learning and and that by reflecting on positive events, improve staff resilience and morale. To date we have had over 200 reported episodes of excellence at Sunderland Royal Hospital.


Currently we feedback to the individuals reported as having demonstrated excellent practice but are keen to develop a system for wider organisational learning.
Following development of the Sunderland and South Tyneside Healthcare Alliance it is planned to introduce Excellence Reporting to South Tyneside General Hospital in the near future. This presents an opportunity to look at staff views on morale, appreciation and learning before and after the introduction of a system of capturing excellence.
Neighbouring Trusts have also been establishing similar systems which has given us the opportunity to begin to develop a regional collaborative.


Appreciative Inquiry is a tool for change management which focuses on strengths. The team at Birmingham Children’s Hospital has used this as a method to analyse some excellence reports in order to embed excellent practice into everyday working. We have arranged training in Appreciative Inquiry with our regional collaborators for November 2017.

We are currently undertaking a survey looking at staff views on excellence reporting, impact of reporting and perceptions on learning. Informal feedback has been very positive. We plan to start to share learning through a feedback bulletin, a lessons learned session and show case event with the Trust Innovations team.

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I like the idea of the CEO personally signing each nomininaton!

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