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Patient Safety (Government Response to Select Committee Report)

Volume 497: debated on Tuesday 13 October 2009

We are today laying before Parliament the Government’s response (Cm 7709) to the Health Select Committee (HSC) report “Patient Safety”, which was published on 3 July 2009.

“High Quality Care for All”, the final report of the “NHS Next Stage Review”, published in June 2008, set out a vision of an NHS that has quality of care at its heart; and works in partnership with patients and the public, providing people with more information and choice.

Securing the safety of patients applies to all healthcare disciplines and it is a challenge faced by healthcare systems all over the world. Safety is a core dimension of quality and relies on a whole system if patients are to receive the highest level of care. The key to achieving this is creating a culture that is open and fair—open to patients and fair for staff. This requires a broad range of actions in organisational leadership, performance improvement, environmental safety, risk management and clinical engagement.

The Health Select Committee’s report praises the Government for being the first in the world to adopt a policy, that makes patient safety a priority and welcomes the creation of the National Patient Safety Agency and the work of the National Reporting and Learning System to facilitate systematic reporting and learning from adverse events involving patients.

The Committee was concerned that not all services are safe enough yet and made several recommendations for the future improvement of patient safety.

The Government response welcomes the Health Select Committee’s report and sets out the measures that the Government have been taking to improve patient safety as part of its quality agenda.

Today’s publication is in the Library and copies are available to hon. Members from the Vote Office.