WHA National Collaborative

The National Collaborative drew on improvement methodologies developed by the US Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) in the US, and successfully employed by hospitals in  the UK, the US and other places, to achieve sustained improvements in patient care. For some examples of the use of this methodology & its results overseas see: the Scottish Patient Safety Program. The strength as a methodology is that it focuses on spread and adaptation of existing knowledge about best practice care to multiple settings to accomplish a common aim.

The Collaborative was hosted by Women's Healthcare Australasia in partnership with the  NSW Clinical Excellence Commission,  supported by Safer Care Victoria and the Clinical Excellence Division of Queensland Health.

Teams signed up to participate in the WHA National Collaborative between September 2017 – December 2018 . They received extensive education, resources and regular improvement science coaching.  Teams were supported to reliably implement the Perineal Protection Bundle© which included 5 elements of care known to reduce risk of harm from perineal tears. 

For more information on the Perineal Protection Bundle©, please click here

A thorough review of the WHA National Collaborative improvement process and results has been completed. Results are being prepared for publication in peer reviewed journals. A summary of results are available here:


WHA National Collaborative Methodology 

During the Collaborative each team was supported to undertake small scale changes in their maternity unit with the aim of quickly identifying successful strategies for improvement.  Support provided included:

  • A dedicated improvement advisor and Medical Director of Collaboratives  who worked with Hospital teams to support local change and troubleshoot
  • Monthly team coaching and weekly phone calls
  • Three face to face learning sessions, where clinicians come to learn strategies that enable them to make effective change in their services
  • Access to an electronic  quality improvement learning platform with which to collect and analyse data on both care processes and outcomes
  • Access to a discussion forum and chat room to facilitate sharing of improvement strategies
  • Support to develop strategies to hold gains and embed practices beyond the life of the Collaborative.

One of the key tangible benefits to hospitals who enrolled in the Collaborative was building capacity and capability within their teams in the science and methodology of achieving improved outcomes for women. These skills could then be deployed to other priority topics subsequent to the completion of this Collaborative.

Services that participated in the WHA National Collaborative 2018.