Treating patients with compassion, reducing the number of falls on wards and good hand-washing are some of the indicators that could be introduced, health secretary Alan Johnson said yesterday.
In a keynote speech to an NHS Confederation conference in Manchester, Mr Johnson set out plans to develop a set of ‘metrics’ that assess not only effectiveness and safety of nursing care, but also how compassionately care has been delivered.
This commitment will be included in Lord Darzi’s review of the NHS as part of a quality framework covering the whole range of care that patients receive. Indicators will focus on three overarching themes – compassionate care, effectiveness and safety.
Mr Johnson said: ‘It is a wonderful reflection of the nursing profession that they want to do everything possible to improve the already high standards of care in the NHS. Measuring quality against indicators such as dignity, respect and communication will help them achieve this.’
RCN general secretary Peter Carter said: ‘These new standards are groundbreaking in that they will directly recognise nurses for the kind of care that patients really value.’