Kate Lampard and I published our NHS investigations lessons learnt regarding report last Thursday morning at a press conference in London. It is available on the government’s website at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/jimmy-savile-nhs-investigations-lessons-learned. The report’s key message is that everyone has the right to feel safe in a hospital. Achieving this in a busy, public institution is a challenge. To do so we need to ensure three things happen:
- Our hospitals should make keeping people safe part of the fabric of their organisation. Leaders have a key role to play in this.
- Everyone – patients, visitors and staff – should feel they can and should raise concerns when they have them. Savile would have been stopped in his tracks had one or two complaints been escalated.
- Savile may be history but the dangers people faced from him are still real and present.
All providers of NHS funded services are required to be open and transparent with families and patients when things go wrong with their healthcare. An independent investigation is carried out separately from any police, legal and Coroner’s proceedings. It is done by an independent, expert organisation, which is given access to all the information and reports about the individual patient’s care and treatment (within the usual patient confidentiality rules), and who can also request interviews with any NHS staff involved.
I will cover some of the detail in my next blog.