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Nhs: Treatment Of "Customers"

Volume 591: debated on Tuesday 30 June 1998

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asked Her Majesty's Government:Further to the Written Answer by the Lord McIntosh of Haringey on 18 June (

WA 151), whether they will ensure that users of the NHS are treated like paying customers and not supplicants: and whether they will issue an instruction to all NHS hospitals that customers should be addressed by their surnames and titles unless the use of the Christian name is desired and sanctioned by the customer. [HL2430]

We are committed to encouraging a spirit of equal partnership between National Health Service staff, patients, users and carers. The Patient's Charter, which is currently being reviewed, already states that staff should ask patients whether they want to be called by their first or last name and respect that preference.