Improving quality in mental health & community care through digital audits

How NELFT is creating a consistent view of quality across 3,000+ square miles.

Client: North East London NHS Foundation Trust | Customer since: 2017

Key Lead(s): Stephanie Dawe | Area: Mental Health and Community Care

Community Care


NELFT covers over 3,000 square miles across north-east London, Essex, and Kent. The staff spent a considerable amount of time completing paper audits, and a lack of efficient digital integration made it difficult for chief nurses and senior staff to see what was going on across NELFT’s inpatient areas.

  • Service covers large geography
  • Hard to have an organisation-wide view of quality and safety
  • Dependency on paper audits
  • Were looking for a more innovative way for staff to take care of their own audits and also gave senior staff an easy and efficient way to understand what was going on across our inpatient areas
  • Delay in audit report of several weeks, making it difficult to spot immediate or ongoing issues; solutions could be misguided due to lack of current results


With Perfect Ward, audits are now completed regularly and more frequently. As well as expert inspections, weekly self audits have been introduced to provide ongoing assurance. Live reporting has made it easy for the senior staff and the chief nurse to view results across all the trust’s sites, regardless of where they are.


NEFLT initially commissioned 22 sites but have now rolled out to over 72 sites across the whole organisation. The evidence provided by real-time audits has helped staff improve patient experience and safety as they are able to deal with issues immediately. Perfect Ward weekly audits help staff create a more targeted approach to ensuring quality and patient safety. Perfect Ward has also changed culture, with staff now seeing audit as a positive tool to help them drive positive and sustained change.

“One of the reasons we decided to commission Perfect Ward was really about our values: putting people first and prioritising quality.”

Stephanie Dawe
Chief Nurse and Executive Director of Operations for Essex and Kent
North East London NHS Foundation Trust

Covering 3000 square miles