Launched: Specialist-Led Healthcare Incident Investigation Course

We are excited to launch our newest educational offering – ‘Healthcare Incident Investigation‘. The week-long course has been developed with Cranfield University and designed to take place online in recognition of current COVID-19 teaching limitations. Delegates who have completed the course will receive a Continuing Professional Development (CPD) certificate in ‘Foundation in Healthcare Incident Investigation’ from Cranfield University – the world-renowned Safety and Accident Investigation Centre.

Why this course?

The way in which healthcare organisations respond and learn following patient safety incidents has been highlighted as a cause for concern repeatedly:

  • Earlier this year, the Care Quality Commission (CQC) published a briefing document aimed to improve maternity safety which highlighted ‘…a lack of investigation and learning when things go wrong’.
  • In 2018, the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists’ Each Baby Counts report highlighted significant variability in the quality of local maternity investigations, the lack of family involvement, and the tendency to blame individuals rather than fully seeking to understand and address systemic issues.
  • The Better Births report (2016) called for a ‘national standardised investigation process when things go wrong’ and highlighted a lack of national training as a concern.

Although many organisations have worked to improve how they respond and learn from adverse events, there clearly remains a need to provide better training and support in this area.

In response, Baby Lifeline developed a 2-day course – Learning from Adverse Events in Maternity Services – which was piloted in February of this year. Feedback has been fantastic, and the course will continue to run again as soon as is safe to do so during the current pandemic.

Running the course highlighted the need and appetite for a further, in-depth practical training course for those specialising in carrying out high-quality, patient-safety focused investigations. We are delighted to have partnered with Cranfield University to develop and deliver this.


Baby Lifeline and Cranfield University Collaboration

We have partnered with the world-renowned Safety and Accident Investigation Centre at Cranfield University to a develop a practical, hands-on training course specifically in healthcare incident investigation.

“Cranfield has over 40 years of experience training incident investigators in many safety critical sectors.  We recently brought this expertise and knowledge to the field of healthcare by proving initial training for HSIB investigators.  We are delighted to partner with Baby Lifeline so that proven investigator skills can been made available to a wider healthcare cohort; ultimately improving safety in the healthcare sector.”

Craig Cattell – Lecturer in Safety & Accident Investigation, Cranfield University

“The point at which something goes wrong in healthcare is critical for everyone involved. Carrying out a high-quality incident investigation requires a high level of knowledge and skills, yet too often healthcare organisations delegate such investigations to clinical staff with little training or support. Baby Lifeline is delighted to have been able to work with Cranfield University to offer such a comprehensive, high-quality training course in this vital area.”

James Titcombe – Course Director, Baby Lifeline


About the course

The investigation of incidents and accidents is a highly practical task. Whilst it is underpinned by scientific principles and methods, an investigator needs to draw upon a wide range of knowledge and skills to respond to a novel and dynamic situation. Serious incidents in healthcare are often highly emotional and require the sensitive collection and analysis of evidence to effect positive change.

The course is based around a week-long healthcare incident simulation and utilises an array of practical exercises throughout to enable theoretical delivery, practical learning, consolidation of learnt skills, and experience of near-real-world environments. These exercises range from delegates conducting interviews with healthcare professionals and supporting actors, to interpretation and analysis of evidence, developing findings, and writing recommendations. Practical exercises are based on a simulated event that is based on a real-world scenario, so delegates will gain experience conducting a high-fidelity simulated investigation. 

Course Content

Delegates will be provided with specialist training in the following areas:

  • Gathering and recording evidence.
  • Establishing and recording a sequence of events.
  • Identifying and recording causal and contributory factors relating to the case.
  • Engaging and involving families.
  • Interviewing techniques (structured, semi-structured, cognitive).
  • Developing and writing appropriate reports and healthcare recommendations.
  • Delivery and awareness of regulatory and NHS patient safety policies.
  • Understanding systemic investigations and human performance issues.
  • Understanding organisational factors and safety culture.
How To Book

We will be piloting the course in January, and more information can be found here.

You can also contact for further information or questions

Download Course Flyer

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