Is The NHS Learning From Patient Safety Incidents

Date Added 29.04.16

A fascinating newspaper article in the Belfast Telegraph highlights a real problem within the NHS, a failure to learn from errors, according to a quarter of NHS Staff.

The article reports on an NHS staff poll and two recent reports.

According to the article nearly 300,000 NHS staff took part in the poll (that is about a quarter of all NHS staff) and a quarter of those people felt that their hospitals do not learn from errors.

The reports point to fear of being blamed, poor communication, budget cuts, an aging population amongst other points that conspire to prevent improvements in patient safety.

The article suggests annualised figures of about 1,200,000 patient safety incidents in the NHS. 42,000 that cause moderate harm to a patient, 4,500 that cause severe harm to a patient and 1,400 that lead to the death of a patient. All alarming figures I am sure you will agree.

However, the NHS is already aware of cost effective measures that could go a long way to improve patient safety. The NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement exists to improve patient safety. The Clinical Human Factors group produced this document in 2009 which, if implemented, would go some way to improving patient safety.

Perhaps some joined up thinking is required to improve patient safety. Can it really be as simple as implementing a 7-year-old ‘how to guide’? What is the purpose of creating such guides if they are not implemented? What measure do you think would improve patient safety?

If you or a loved one have been effected by an NHS Patient Safety Incident contact us for ‘No Win, No Fee’ advice on 0333 414 9123.

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