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We need to work together to ensure patient safety

Wed 20 Nov 2013

MiP calls for effective staff engagement to ensure patient safety

The Francis report has already had a positive impact on the culture of the NHS. We broadly welcome the Government’s further response, as it provides a useful framework for us to take forward the partnership working that is needed to achieve real and lasting change in the culture of the NHS. In particular we need to develop the effective staff and patient engagement which will help to build a culture of respect and dignity and eliminate bullying. 

The Government do, however, place too much emphasis on policing behaviour after the event, rather than on what is needed to ensure the highest standards of patient safety and compassionate care are a matter of routine in all places of care at all times. 

MiP is unconvinced that the ‘fit and proper person’ test is the best way to establish and codify high standards for management practice, values or behaviours. We will, however, work with the Department of Health to ensure that whatever mechanism is developed to enforce this is fair, transparent and objective. 

We welcome the decision that the duty of candour will rest with organisations, not with individuals. 

We all know that the NHS still delivers outstanding service to the British public. But we must never be complacent and one incident of poor care is too much. We must not tolerate it. We must work together to ensure that best practice in the NHS is widely adopted and variation reduced or eliminated. We must include patients in service development and listen to them and to staff when they make suggestions or complaints.

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