2nd Dec ’18 10:12 Manchester airport / somewhere over the North Sea

International leg 1 – Japan: Morning all! So – in a very tired fashion as I never sleep well before flights – we’re just about to take off. I’m bound for Helsinki then on to Tokyo – very exciting but a little nerve-wracking. Thanks to the very kind FinnAir check-in attendant at Manchester airport this morning; you were very helpful indeed.  So, powered by Pret porridge and the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust’s backing (with a flat white or two thrown in this morning) this is the start of my “Exploration of Improving Outcomes for Premature Babies”.

In research acronym form it’s the EQuIIP project: Exploring Quality Improvement Internationally for Preterms #EQuIIP. In truth it’s not really the beginning as I’ve been ensconced in planning and preparation for a number of months.

(Take Off!) All smooth. Small plane. Only a short flight. So many people have already engaged with this project to support me in getting as much as possible from the experience – both for my development and perhaps more importantly, to reduce the variation we see in important outcomes for very early babies. Centres in Japan seem to be leading the way in some key areas so I’m hoping to learn as much as I can from these travels to bring back and share in the UK. What will translate to our practice? What doesn’t quite fit with our populations? How can we make crucial changes to our own practice? Watch this space! I’ll be continuing to work with BAPM (British Association for Perinatal Medicine) as part of their Quality Collaborative to spread as much helpful learning as is possible, sensible and appropriate – #NSQI to find out more…

Thanks Caryl Skene at Sheffield’s Jessop Wing NICU (Newborn Intensive Care Unit) for her spectacular support in organising and hosting focus groups with me. It’s been such an eye-opener to consider what questions, themes and aspects to look out for and investigate from the perspective of many different team members. Thanks Jessop Wing Team. So a little in-flight relaxation I think. Where’s that book…   

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