Patient Flow Academy

The aim of the HSE Patient Flow Academy is to improve patient flow by supporting staff to identify, define and improve processes, pathways and systems for the safe and timely delivery of care. This is driven by a culture of continuous improvement, collaboration and sharing of what works well for sites.

Webinars about Patient Flow for HSE staff

A series of Patient Flow Academy webinars for HSE staff are being organised as part of this work and are open to all operational and front-line clinical staff across acute and community services with an interest in patient flow.

Webinar 1 (video) focuses on introducing the HSE Patient Flow Academy, reviewing common patient flow challenges and the impact to patient safety and providing an overview of patient flow management strategies.

On 16th October 2023 the HSE hosted an ‘Introduction to the Patient Flow Academy’ event.

The event brought together nearly 200 colleagues in person from all over the country to hear about a range of issues including driving improvement in the HSE, an introduction to the Patient Flow Academy and the principles of Good Patient Discharge to Improve Patient Flow.

Attendees heard from senior colleagues in the HSE, expert speakers working in improving patient flow, including keynote speakers Dr Liz Lees, Professor of Nursing Practice, Centre for Care Excellence, University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust and Dr Mike O’Connor, HSE National Clinical Advisor, Acute Operations.

We heard from HSE leaders from teams around the country about driving improvement for patient safety, quality and care through enhanced integrated patient flow.


Agenda for the day 


Download presentations given at Patient Flow Academy Introductory event 2023

Dr Mike O’Connor, Keynote address: An Introduction to the Patient Flow Academy  

Dr Liz Lees, Keynote address: Principles of Good Patient Discharge to Improve Patient Flow: Evidence and Pragmatism 

The Patient Flow Academy will provide resources and supports to drive improvements in patient flow including processes, pathways and systems. The HSE Patient Flow Academy will help improve patient care, increase efficiency, enhance communications, optimise resource allocation, and increase patient satisfaction.

The HSE Patient Flow Academy will improve patient flow by supporting health and social care staff to identify, define and improve processes, pathways and systems for the safe, timely and effective delivery of care driven by a culture of continuous improvement. This will be achieved through the development and delivery of supports and resources targeting the following workstreams:

Leadership Development

To develop competent and capable leaders who are able to drive, achieve and sustain improvements.

Staff engagement and training

To develop staff awareness, knowledge, skills and attitudes regarding patient flow as part of a whole system approach.

Integrated working and knowledge transfer

To develop communities of practice which facilitates integrated working, sharing of best practice and knowledge transfer.

Innovation and transformation supports

To provide a suite of best practice resources and toolkits alongside practical supports to enable transformation.

Monitoring and evaluation

To monitor and evaluate the impact of the Patient Flow Academy including national and local patient flow improvement initiatives to support evidence based practice.

The underlying principles of the Patient Flow Academy are as follows;

  • Patient at the centre of the academy
  • Promote patient flow as "everyone’s responsibility".
  • Connecting top down and bottom-up approaches to drive a culture of quality improvement to patient flow
  • Collaborating through an integrated whole system approach
  • Building staff capability through empowerment and engagement
  • Supporting and evaluating innovations

The next steps for the Patient Flow Academy include the following:  

  • Develop and deliver a programme of work;
  • Establish the governance structure;
  • Start with a small dedicated national team.