Barbara O’Donnell

Barbara O’Donnell

Anaesthetic Team Leader, Whittington Hospital, London

I am a registered Operating Department Practitioner (ODP) and have been qualified for 22 years and currently work in the role of Anaesthetic Team Leader. This involves leading a team of 20 anaesthetic nurses and ODPs, at the Whittington Hospital.

The hospital has 11 operating theatres currently, with a second maternity operating theatre being built. The anaesthetic team work across several different surgical specialities; adult and paediatric, help provide anaesthesia in outlying areas and are a part of the hospital cardiac arrest team.

I’m interested in the move within healthcare towards a so called “culture of patient safety” and how this can be achieved. Clearly, improvement is something that is constant and ongoing. The technological developments in healthcare, have brought with them better outcomes and patient experience; but also a daily environment of increasing complexity, where tasks are sometimes duplicated on paper and on a computer, so that the data can be collected. However, trying to change a culture within this complexity and how everyone contributes to that culture, is what interests me.

The Inspire Improvement Fellowship 2019 is a fantastic opportunity to explore this complexity, as well as add to my leadership toolkit, in ways that I hope will be beneficial for patients, my team and the wider department.