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A Simple Equation: How Georgia’s Insights Equip ellenor with the Data to Deliver High-Quality Hospice Care

The equation is simple – to provide the best care, you need the best people.

But as a hospice charity like ellenor, it’s not only the best people you need, but a diverse mix of them. It’s about building a team with a contrasting, complementary set of skills. And recognising that, for everyone on the frontlines of ellenor’s hospice care, you need equally passionate, dedicated staff behind the scenes, too.

People to run the reports, dive into the data – and crunch the numbers that matter most. 

People like Georgia.

Georgia Cooke is ellenor’s Performance and Data Analyst. Her role? Supporting ellenor’s clinical and financial teams with insights into all aspects of the charity’s status and services. To look at the latest figures and help ellenor’s wider teams understand how to leverage these to make ongoing improvements.

Georgia explains.

“With our clinical services, for example, it might be identifying patterns in patient diagnoses, and how we can adapt our services to reflect that shift. If we have more dementia patients than we used to, this could represent a gap in our services – meaning there might be scope to better tailor our care to dementia patients.

“With our financial reporting, it’s more about what our budget is, what we’re spending it on, and whether we can improve it.”

Georgia’s analyses, forecasts, and projections are integral to ellenor’s commitment to delivering high-quality, holistic care – from both its Northfleet-based inpatient ward, and the homes of its patients throughout the Kent and Bexley communities.

Many of the reports Georgia runs go either straight to ellenor’s funders, or fuel the efforts of its Trusts & Foundations, Income Generation, and Fundraising teams in engaging ellenor’s donors, volunteers, and fundraisers in the community.

Considering ellenor relies on the generosity of the public for X% of its funding – around X million a year – this is vitally important.

“The statistics I provide enable us to demonstrate to our funders and supporters in the community that we’ve done, or are doing, the things we set out to do with the money donated to us. If we want to put together a proposal for funds – or go out and request more money from donors – my reports are involved in that.

“Without those numbers, we wouldn’t get the funding we do; we wouldn’t know the state of our services. We need to see those figures; otherwise, we’d be running blind.”

A big part of Georgia’s role? Supporting ellenor’s quarterly reporting efforts to the local ICB (Integrated Care Board). ICBs (formerly Clinical Commissioning Groups, or CCGs) oversee NHS and other care services within an area, including GPs and hospitals.

ellenor’s local ICB, NHS Kent and Medway, provides around X% of its funding. It also helps set and steer the hospice charity’s targets – for both its care and education arms – and connect it to other local care organisations. As part of ellenor’s contract with the ICB, it needs to report on key metrics, every three months, to demonstrate progress.

“We need to be able to prove to the ICB and our funders what we’ve done with the money,” Georgia explains. “Otherwise, we’d be relying solely on anecdotal data, and – as useful as that is – the world now gravitates to cold, hard numbers.”

Like many of the dedicated people in ellenor’s Finance, IT, Marketing, and Fundraising teams, Georgia’s role isn’t patient-facing. But despite that lack of direct patient contact, Georgia finds plenty of satisfaction in watching the numbers grow; and knowing that the positive numbers on the screen – the incremental improvements, year on year – correspond to another patient with a life-limiting condition receiving the care they deserve.

“Every so often, I have to update reports about where we were a year ago with where we are now. I love seeing the progress; the impact of those little changes along the way on our ability to deliver outstanding care. Where we’ve increased our visits, or expanded our care.”

Now in her fifth year at ellenor (after starting on a nine-month contract as a Clinical Administrator), Georgia has been involved in some high-value, high-profile projects. She helped spearhead ellenor’s switch to EMIS – a new online patient records system shared by local GPs – a rollout which, after over a year in the making, went live in March 2023. (And is already paying dividends for ellenor’s productivity and processes.)

The success of the EMIS endeavour is a testament to Georgia’s passion for a challenge.

“I’ve always loved problem solving, even when I was young,” says Georgia. “I loved maths, science. Even my degree – a Master’s in Chemistry – was heavily focused on receiving and analysing information. At looking at the patterns within the data and taking into account all the different environment factors to analyse what might be happening – and why.”

“I might be looking at the number of referrals we’re getting every month, for example, and notice that it’s dropped off completely. I’d then investigate with the different teams involved to figure out why. On the other hand, we might have seen a positive increase in referrals. In which case, it’s asking: how can we keep that going? To continue taking more telephone calls, and seeing more patients?

“It’s the same problem-solving principles from my degree – looking into the trends to find out what’s going on, and how we can improve it.”

As a maths person, it’s an equation Georgia will feel right at home with. The best people, plus the best processes, equals the best care. Easy!