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The aim of the SIREN project is to describe and evaluate the development and performance of different emergency and urgent care systems (EUCS) in Ireland and produce a framework for the future evaluation of EUCS in this country. The research programme is comprised of six inter-related work packages designed to meet the overall aim of the project.

Qualitative Study of Stakeholder Views on Emergency and Urgent Care Systems Configuration

The purpose of this work package is to identify networks of emergency and urgent care in Ireland. The model of emergency care planned or implemented in each region will be described along with the process by which plans for reconfiguration were developed.

Dr Orla Healy and Dr Claire Buckley will conduct a documentary analysis which will produce detailed descriptions of the EUCS models in development and operational in each region.

Interviews will be conducted to explore stakeholder views on the structure of emergency and urgent care systems in Ireland. Stakeholders include staff from the Health Service Executive (HSE) directly involved in or impacted by the re-organisation of emergency and urgent care services; GP representatives in hospital and community settings; patient representatives; local politicians; local media; and various local groups that have emerged as concern about the HSE reconfiguration programme has grown. The interviews will be conducted by Dr Elsa Droog and Dr Conor Foley of University College Cork.

For furthur information on this work package please contact:

Consensus Development Study on Quantitative Indicators

This work package will focus on identifying routinely available data and the most useful set of system level indicators for evaluating emergency and urgent care systems (EUCS) in Ireland. The research team, supported by world-leading experts on EUCS indicators from the University of Sheffield, and working in conjunction with on-going initiatives within the HSE, will develop, implement and test a toolkit of indicators that is suitable for the Irish context. Consensus on the most useful set of indicators for evaluating EUCS in Ireland will be sought through consultation with a national group of experts on EUCS in Ireland.

Analysis of Quantitative Indicators of Emergency and Urgent Care System Performance

This work package will use the performance indicators identified in work package 2 to evaluate levels of quality in emergency and urgent care systems within and between each geographical region in Ireland. Dr Steve Thomas and Dr Bridget Kane, Trinity College Dublin, will lead on work to measure variation in resources across different regions. The comparison of EUCS performance across regions will be led by Dr Tony Fitzgerald, University College Cork.

For further information on this work package please contact:

Patient Experience Surveys

The focus of work package 4 is on the patient experience of emergency and urgent care. We will conduct the first national survey of the patient experience of engaging with emergency and urgent care services in Ireland. The public will be contacted by telephone and offered the opportunity to share their views on and experiences of emergency and urgent care services in this country.

For further information on this work package please contact:

Synthesis of Qaulitative and Quantitative Findings and Final Consultation with Stakeholders

This work package will bring together the qualitative evidence collected in WP1 with the qauntitative evidence collected in WP3 and WP4. This integration of evidence will be the first implementation of our new evaluative framework for emergency and urgent care systems in Ireland. The combined results will be presented to the stakeholders interviewed in WP1 to collect their views on its credibility and usefulness.

Report Writing and Dissemination

This work package focuses on final report writing for the research programme and the distribution of results across a broad spectrum. A web-based toolkit will be developed outlining the evaluative framework for emergency and urgent care systems that we have developed during the programme.  We hope that this toolkit will facilitate and encourage the continuing evaluation of EUCS in Ireland.

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