A range of key patient safety data is being published today by 17 trusts, as part of a new drive on transparency in the NHS, the chief nursing officer for England has announced today.
The move was announced by Jane Cummings in her keynote speech at this year’s CNO summit in Birmingham.
It represents the government’s latest initiative to make data on factors affecting patient safety more accessible to the public.
As part of a pilot, 17 acute trusts in the North of England are publishing data on pressure ulcers developed in hospital, falls in hospital and the healthcare associated infections MRSA and C difficile figures.
In addition, they have published their results from the NHS safety thermometer and the Friends and Family Test, as well as patient and staff experience survey questions and patient stories.
The plan is that additional northern trusts will begin publishing the same in December, with the eventual aim is to expand it to the rest of the country and other care sectors.
The data will be displayed on each trust’s website. NHS Choices and NHS England will provide a web link to the data.
Announcing the move, Ms Cummings said: “Absolute transparency is the key to driving improvements in standards of care and we need to ensure that every single patient receives great care, every time.
“Today trusts in the North of England will publish safety, effectiveness and experience data; with the overall aim of driving improvements in practice and culture.”
She said that having the data all in one place would “not only build up a picture of care quality but also of an excellent and open reporting culture”.
Ms Cummings added: “Our patients and their families and carers will be the judge of whether we are succeeding. Through surveys such as the Friends and Family Test – which provide regular feedback – and by demonstrating the impact care is having on our patients, we can assess whether this is the case.”
The first set of data from the NHS Friends and Family survey was published on 30 July, covering the first three months of its use across 4,500 NHS wards and 144 A&E services.
It is intended to allow hospital trusts to gain real time feedback on their services down to individual ward level and is based on one question: “how likely are you to recommend our ward/A&E department to your friends and family if they needed similar care or treatment?”
Patients are presented with six responses ranging from “extremely likely” through to “extremely unlikely”, which are linked to scores ranging from 100 through to -100.
Meanwhile, the NHS Safety Thermometer was launched in April 2012 as a tool to measure levels of avoidable harm.
It gathers data submitted by all NHS providers on a set of four key care quality indicators linked to nursing: pressure ulcers, patient falls, urinary infections from catheters and new venous thromboembolisms.
Data for the thermometer is collated via a monthly series of snapshots.
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