An Alcohol Withdrawal Care Bundle for Acute Hospitals

North West LondonGeneric Health Relevance
Start Date: 1 Sep 2015 End Date: 31 Mar 2017

An Alcohol Withdrawal Care Bundle for Acute Hospitals

Project overview

A care bundle is a group of interventions that ward nursing staff and medical colleagues should carry out to ensure that treatment is given in a timely and consistent way. Some of the intended outcomes of the project are: 

  1. Reduction in the incidence of severe withdrawal in hospital
  2. Improved prescribing of Chlordiazepoxide and Thiamine (Pabrinex)
  3. Use of a validated alcohol withdrawal scale (AWS)
  4. More appropriate referral to ACT

In August 2016, CLAHRC NWL launched a pilot Alcohol Withdrawal Care Bundle on the four wards of the acute admissions unit (AAU). There had been a trial on the wards for three months earlier in the year (April to June). Feedback from ward staff was used to improve the tool within a Plan – Do – Study – Act framework. Training was provided to nurses on AAU wards in March 2016, and revisited later in the project to allow for staff changes. Induction for medical staff also included basic alcohol awareness, and how to use the care bundle. Trust bulletins and medical rotation induction sessions also promoted its use. The care bundle was based on LNWH Trust policy, with project findings to be implemented across all sites when the six month pilot ends.

Dr Alex Thompson