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Whistleblowers

Volume 405: debated on Monday 19 May 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps the NHS is taking to introduce measures to protect workers who raise concerns about bad practice. [113909]

The Government expect a climate of openness and dialogue in the national health service that encourages staff to feel able to raise concerns about healthcare matters sensibly and responsibly without fear of victimisation.On 27 August 1999, the Department of Health issued new guidance in Health Service Circular (HSC) 1999/198—'The Public Interest Disclosure Act: Whistleblowing in the NHS', to all NHS trusts and health authorities. The HSC advises that all NHS trusts and health authorities are expected to issue guidance to staff so that they know how to raise concerns in a reasonable and responsible way. All NHS employing organisations should have in place policies and procedures that comply with the provisions of the Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998, which is widely regarded as providing the most far reaching whistleblower protection in the world.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what progress has been made in ensuring that NHS whistleblowers are not persecuted in the work place for reporting malpractice; [111763](2) what progress has been made in improving protection for whistleblowers in the NHS. [112695]

The Government expects a climate of openness and dialogue in the National Health Service that encourages staff to feel able to raise concerns about healthcare matters sensibly and responsibly without fear of victimisation.On 27 August 1999, the Department of Health issued new guidance in Health Service Circular (HSC) 1999/198—'The Public Interest Disclosure Act:Whistleblowing in the NHS', to all NHS trusts and health authorities. The HSC advises that all NHS trusts and health authorities are expected to issue guidance to staff so that they know how to raise concerns in a reasonable and responsible way. All NHS employing organisations should have in place policies and procedures that comply with the provisions of the Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998, which is widely regarded as providing the most far reaching whistleblower protection in the world.