PIF TICK member case studies


PIF TICK members tell us why they joined the scheme. They discuss why a quality mark matters and how they create their health information. Watch the videos and read our PIF TICK member case studies below.

Why did you decide to apply for the PIF TICK?

How has the PIF TICK improved the information you produce?

PIF TICK member case studies

A headshot of Tom Bishop from PIF TICK member Anthony Nolan

Tom Bishop – Senior Patient Services and Information Manager, Anthony Nolan

Read Tom’s case study

Why did you decide to apply for the PIF TICK?

There’s so much dubious health information out there. We wanted to make it clear Anthony Nolan’s patient information can be relied upon.
With that in mind, we were keen to attain the PIF TICK quality mark. 
Having the PIF TICK confirms our patient information has been produced in a transparent way with user testing, peer review and evidencing at its core.

How has it improved the information you produce?

It’s helped us to identify all the essential elements of a patient info resource, and then to embed them in a production process that is streamlined and flexible. 
This has helped us to produce and maintain our large number of booklets and webpages. It also enables us to adapt our approach as required by patient need.

Why is it important to have a documented process when producing information?

Most people just see the end result – the web section, booklet or leaflet. They have no idea how it was produced. Why would they? 
Our production process spells out what’s required at every stage to create a patient info resource. 
This maintains transparency in our work and enables colleagues to pick up and complete a resource from any stage if required. 
It also enables us to identify areas for improvement. We want our production process to be as efficient and painless as possible.

How do you support your staff to produce high quality information?

Anyone who works on any part of the production process – as a writer, researcher, copywriter or designer – understands where their contribution fits into the entire process. 
This really helps us to work better as a team and to ultimately get the most out of each resource for the benefit of our patients.
We also have regular production catch ups for our whole Patient Services team. This enables everyone to contribute to create the best patient info resources we can.

How do you decide what information users need?

Our target audience consists of people who have either had or need a stem cell transplant to treat blood cancer or a blood disorder. 
We research their information needs in a number of ways. This includes checking where they currently find their information and looking at the online discussions they are having on a topic-by-topic basis. 
We also have a panel of volunteer patients and family members who help us to identify information needs.
It’s vital that we identify an information need before we produce any resources to meet that need.
We’re a relatively small team maintaining a large number of info resources. We’re never in a position where we can produce resources that are simply ‘nice to have’. Each of our resources must meet a genuine need. 
This also makes it easier for us to demonstrate the impact of each resource as we measure it against key performance indicators linked to that need.

How do you make sure your information is based on reliable evidence?

The writer/researcher of each patient info resource collates a References List as they write their first draft. 
We have an agreed criteria for selecting evidence, to ensure every health fact we publish is based upon the strongest evidence sources available at that time.

How do you involve patients in producing information?

We have a volunteer panel of stem cell transplant patients and family members who help us develop every one of our patient information resources. 
We’re able to draw upon that panel, or other patient contacts via our associated healthcare teams, to ensure we test early versions of our resources with target readers. 
They give us honest feedback. This ensures our completed info resources are clear, accessible and genuinely useful for patients and family members.

How do you get feedback from users?

We gather feedback in a number of ways. Every patient info resource invites feedback via email, we welcome feedback via social media or our associated healthcare teams. We have a live feedback option on every patient info webpage.
Feedback is crucial. It enables us to identify essential changes required immediately, as well as broader points to take into consideration when we produce the next version of that resource.

How do you make sure the information reaches those who need it?

Each of our patient info resources meets a specific patient need, so the format is led by that need.
We produced our fatigue information as an audiobook after patients told us fatigue affected their cognitive abilities to such an extent that it made it difficult for them to read a booklet.
We also research where patients are most likely to encounter information – in a clinic, in online forums, on social media etc. 
This helps us to share our patient info resources via the most appropriate channels.

A headshot of Dr Knut Schroeder from PIF TICK member Expert Self Care

Dr Knut Schroeder  – GP and Founder, Expert Self Care

Read Knut’s case study

Why did you decide to apply for the PIF TICK?

Applying for the PIF TICK helped us review and update the processes we have in place to produce health information. 
We were also keen to be able to prove to users, the general public and our partners that we’re certified by a trusted organisation to provide clear, accurate and reliable health and wellbeing information.

How has it improved the information you produce?

Reviewing our processes has helped us become more effective and efficient. 
For example, we found it challenging to keep up with updating a growing number of apps. 
As a direct result of the PIF TICK application, we started using a shared online project management tool to help us keep track of dates for updates and various other tasks, which has made a big difference to our workflow.

Why is it important to have a documented process when producing information?

It’s important to have a documented process because it allows us to work to an agreed standard, helps us achieve a consistent quality and enables us to compare ourselves against established quality benchmarks. 

How do you support your staff to produce high quality information?

We support everyone who works with us on creating health information by communicating our standards regularly and making useful resources available. This includes PIF’s Information Production Manual, Creating Health Content document and our internal style guide.

How do you decide what information users need?

We decide what information users need by co-producing our information products with representatives of our priority groups. 
We always work with several partner organisations from the NHS, charity and private sector to get additional expert input. This helps make sure our apps are relevant and address a real need. 

How do you make sure your information is based on reliable evidence?

We scope our information carefully and decide in advance which information resources we need to consult. 
We also keen an eye on the tables of contents of major peer-reviewed journals and subscribe to email updates of, for example, NHS organisations, charities and policy makers to ensure we keep up-to-date with emerging evidence. 

How do you involve patients in producing information?

We always involve patients and public contributors as equal team members right from the start of every project and throughout the lifetime of an information product. 

How do you get feedback from users?

We ask for feedback on every page on most of our apps and also provide a dedicated ‘feedback button’ that links to an online survey. 
In addition, we routinely ask for user feedback throughout the development process, for example, by email or direct consultation of users who are part of our team. 
Getting feedback from users is important to ensure information is relevant, adopting the right tone and engaging. 

How do you make sure the information reaches those who need it?

We involve users in our marketing activities and designing our outreach strategies. 
This helps us to identify the best channels for distributing information. 
In addition, many of our users and public contributors actively promote our apps because they believe in the value of them. 

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