Richmond and Twickenham Primary Care Trust is the NHS organisation responsible for health services in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames. Together with Richmond Borough Council, the PCT wanted to raise awareness of best practice in sharing patient/client information to improve efficiency with a variety of health and social service workers across the borough. Both organisations had previously seen forum theatre used to great effect and the challenge was how to make the portrayal of an administrative function interesting and memorable.
Partners With You was commissioned to script and deliver an entertaining and informative piece around the subject of information sharing. Three scenes were written based in a fictitious Health and Social Services Unit. This was delivered by three actors over three hour-long sessions.
Madeleine Escott, Joint Caldicott Officer for the Council and PCT, said: “Engaging staff in training is often difficult but when the subject is as dry as data protection and information security, it is a major challenge to encourage staff to attend, enjoy and learn from the sessions. The work we undertook with Partners With You more than met this challenge and as a result we have fundamentally changed the way we approach our training programme.”
“This enabled us to capture the imagination of our staff as well as raising their awareness of all our key issues. I was surprised and encouraged by the genuine comprehension of the staff during the ‘hot seating’ round up of the key learning points” commented Madeleine.
“The feedback we received ranged from general positive comments and requests for further training in this format, to staff declaring it was the ‘best training’ they had ever received,” she said: “Some stated they had learnt more in a one hour session with Partners With You than a whole day of training with other groups.”
“This hands on, direct approach to training is something that has been lacking in recent years, with organisations favouring ‘online’ packages but from the results we’ve achieved, I would highly recommend getting back to basics with Partners With You and actually talking to staff and engaging their enthusiasm and interest.”