Patient safety still an issue3rd July 2009
MPs have expressed concern that meeting targets too often comes before patient safety for health authorities.
The House of Commons Health Committee also highlighted how basic changes to spinal needles recommended after a teenage boy died eight years ago when drugs were mistakenly injected into his spine instead of a vein have yet to be implemented.
In its 100-page annual report, the health committee said: “It is totally unacceptable that an identified and simple solution to a catastrophic problem should take so long to be put into practical use.”
The committee made a series of recommendations urging: boards and senior management make patient safety top priority; regular reviews of patients' case notes to check for negligence; quick implementation of proven technologies; ensuring families always receive full, frank information; introduction without delay of NHS Redress Scheme.
The NHS Redress Scheme which was designed to encourage openness by removing the threat of lengthy and costly litigation has not been fully introduce, three years after parliament passed the necessary legislation.
The committee, which said it was appalled at such a delay, also raised concerns at medical harm costing billions of pounds a year, as well as the distress caused to families.
It found some boards never considered patient safety and mentioned Mid-Staffordshire Trust where pursuit of foundation status saw patient safety neglected.
Health minister Ann Keen said the recommendations would be carefully considered while Roger Goss, of Patient Concern, warned that the failure to improve safety would in turn deter people from using the NHS.
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Title: Patient safety still an issue
Author: Mark Nicholls
Article Id: 12011
Date Added: 3rd Jul 2009