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Magnolia House: New building, new service?

A project to evaluate the early implementation and impact of Magnolia House.

Magnolia House is a new facility at Birmingham Children’s Hospital (BCH) that is designed to support parents, families and staff who need to have important (difficult) conversations or require bereavement care. An evaluation of this innovative project is underway. CLAHRC researchers have conducted a Public and Patient Involvement exercise to confirm the outcomes that matter most to families and staff and are currently interviewing staff who are involved in the development and management of Magnolia House to determine whether the rationale, defining characteristics, installation and implementation plans are clear and comprehensive, and to examine if these are congruent with the intended purpose and with best evidence and practice. A staff survey to explore existing practices in sharing life-altering information and bereavement care, and staff views about Magnolia house has been developed, pretested and administered. A ‘walk-around’ assessment used ‘photo-elicitation’ has also been undertaken to qualitatively evaluate the suitability of the environments in which life-altering information is shared at BCH currently. This involved young people taking photographs of key environmental features and discussing the meaning of these within focus groups. In the next phase we will examine if Magnolia House is implemented in accordance with the model design and will examine whether Magnolia House is operating as intended, is achieving its objectives. This information will provide valuable information to inform further development, including scale-up and spread.

Study lead: k dot l dot shaw at bham dot ac dot uk University of Birmingham