Good practice - Rehab Group - Best Practice Reference Group – COVID19 Framework

Rehab Group, Ireland, “Best Practice Reference Group – COVID19 Framework"

Summary information on the organisation

The Rehab Group has existed for more than 70 years, it was founded in 1949. It operates across the whole Republic of Ireland and currently has about 2,800 staff members. Its main mission is to help the people the Rehab Group serves to be more independent, to contribute to and be more included in their communities, to empower them with the skills and confidence to be active in the workforce and to support them to be in charge of the health and wellness.

Summary information about the programme

Rehab Group’s response to the COVID pandemic was immediate, with structures quickly developed to provide information, guidance, and support. A COVID-19 response committee was established with senior managers who held appropriate oversight, governance, and decision-making capabilities, we were able to respond quickly to an ever changing/unprecedented landscape.

One of the biggest challenges throughout this crisis, has been responding to the volume of information circulating and changing rapidly. The structures within the Rehab Group and the implementation of our Best Practice Reference Group to respond to information received from Public Health, the HSE and other government agencies ensured we were in a position to track and filter key information and quickly communicate to frontline staff. We showed ability to receive, filter and disseminate information in formats suited to each service.

The Best Practice Reference Group has a membership from across the organisation, individuals who are subject matter experts, with key competencies and tacit knowledge, collaborating throughout. The Best Practice Reference Group’s remit continues to be to intercept information from both external and internal sources, reviewing its appropriateness and developing guidance, procedures, and protocols.

Throughout, the team were challenged to ensure that staff had access to the most up-to-date versions of all information.

The team developed a “COVID Framework” that provided information under a number of key areas, for example Governance, Infection Prevention Control, COVID management, Health & Safety, staff training & support etc. Each of these areas had a brief synopsis included, with live links to the most up-to-date information, documents, guidance, sites, processes, easy reads etc. This Framework was accessible to all through the company’s SharePoint site. To ensure consistent, accurate information was being disseminated, the Best Practice Reference Group, has one designated person who emails all staff providing an update on key information and links to new /updated documents and the link to the Framework on a weekly basis and more frequently if required. Having one designated person, ensures consistent & direct contact, where queries can be redirected and supported, but also redirecting to Case Management, when additional supports and guidance are required.

The visual aspect of the communications and “COVID Framework” engaged more staff and ensured they were fully informed of the ever-changing environment, of changing guidance and support regarding the pandemic, ensuring we kept people as safe as possible. 

The Framework provided management and staff with accurate, accessible information in a timely manner, which removed significant stress at front line level. Therefore, service provision was enhanced, and staff were empowered to support the people who use our services, in the knowledge they had the correct knowledge and tools to do so.