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NHS will have to admit to patient safety failures

Posted in: Medical Negligence 

New rules to toughen transparency in NHS organisations and increase patient confidence have been announced by the Health Minister Dr Dan Poulter.

From April 2013, the NHS Commissioning Board will be required to include a contractual duty of openness in all commissioning contracts.

This means that NHS organisations, such as hospitals, will be required to tell patients if their safety has been compromised, and ensure that lessons are learned to prevent them from being repeated. Although all NHS organisations are currently expected to be open about mistakes, there is no contractual duty to hold them to account when this does not happen.

Dr Dan Poulter said:

“Patients place great faith in the NHS organisations that treat them, and they in turn have a duty to be honest and open about every aspect of care they deliver. When mistakes are made, we want them acknowledged, patients informed and lessons to be learnt.”


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