#HelloMyNameIs: A call for new research

In 2013, Kate Granger (@GrangerKate) (1981 – 2016), in response to her own health care experience as a cancer patient, launched the #HelloMyNameIs social media campaign with this tweet.

Screen Shot 2017-08-08 at 4.18.10 pm

From that point onwards, Kate (with her insights as a consultant medical officer and as a patient) and her husband Chris Pointon @PointonChris campaigned strongly to change the behaviour of healthcare professionals who failed to introduce themselves by name to their patients. Quickly taken up as a grass-roots campaign in the UK – involving both health providers and patients – by 2015 more than 400,000 NHS staff had made a pledge to introduce themselves to “every patient they meet” when first providing a service. By 2016, more than 120 healthcare organisations in the UK had backed the campaign. Now Australian healthcare organisations are beginning to follow suit, and in September-October 2017, Chris Pointon @PointonChris is touring Australia and New Zealand to tell the #HelloMyNameIs story.

While it is individuals who take the pledge to introduce themselves to every patient they meet, the ‘Hello my name is’ campaign can be considered a ‘population-level’ and socially-mediated intervention, aimed at increasing the number of health professionals who: (a) introduce themselves to every patient they meet, and (b) consider the patient at the centre of their interactions, in the manner of providing person-centred care.

On 8th August 2017, almost four years after its launch, we searched the scientific databases (CINAHL, EMBASE, Web of Science, PSYCInfo, Medline) and Google Scholar, for any articles including the term #hellomynameis or phrase ‘hello my name is’. We set no limits for year, language, or outlet. We were looking for any evidence of the uptake or implementation of any aspects of the campaign and any of its outcomes. All of the 28 items (yielding 21 full text PDFs) we located were in English, originated from the UK, and these included:

  • 1 full peer reviewed journal article, reporting and reflecting on a debate about person centred care in the NHS (Hardy, 2015),
  • 1 peer reviewed conference abstract of a study (auditing bedside boards + patient recall of patient and nurse names) in a hospital which had adopted the campaign (Mahdi, English, & Ahmed, 2016), and
  • Several non-peer reviewed editorials and other publications about the ‘Hello my name is’ campaign of Kate Granger @GrangerKate and Chris Pointon @PointonChris, including several anecdotal reports of individual or systems-wide benefit, from the perspectives of healthcare providers.

We did not locate any systematic evaluations of the #HelloMyNameIs campaign either in the UK or internationally, and there were no reports reflecting the views of patients.

Considering the longevity of the campaign, and several anecdotal reports outlining the extent of its uptake and benefit in the UK, collaborative interdisciplinary research is needed to: (a) understand more about the nature of the campaign, and what it has involved within and across different organisations; (b) evaluate the impact of the campaign, for health services, organisations, staff, and patients alike, not only in terms of patient and staff safety, but also patient and staff satisfaction and other indicators of healthcare quality and efficiency; (c) gather the views and experiences of patients, healthcare providers, and service managers, to identify barriers to and facilitators for the campaign and any associated benefits; and (d) identify key aspects of the #HelloMyNameIs social media campaign which could be applied to other population-level interventions aiming to improve patient-provider communication.


Download our short summary of some relevant reports in the scientific databases on #HelloMyNameIs, here: Summary of Search on 8 Aug 2017 for #HelloMyNameIs

See some examples of Awards for compassionate care named in Kate’s honour: Kate Granger Awards for Compassionate Care and European Kate Granger Awards 2017

Credits: The ‘Hello my name is’ logo on this post is used with permission. Blog post authored by Bronwyn Hemsley @BronwynHemsley and Lucy Bryant @LucyEBryant.

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