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Patient safety targets set by DoH/HSE/SCA

16 Sep 2016

Pic: Getty Images

The Department of Health, HSE and State Claims Authority (SCA) are to drive forward a “very ambitious and much-needed programme of patient safety reforms”, which focuses on improving the quality of healthcare and its safety, the Minister for Health has indicated.

New patient experience surveys to be launched in a matter of weeks will also be conducted from next year to feed the patients’ voice for the first time into statistical health service quality reports, which would not only improve understanding of the performance, quality and safety of the health service, but also help inform service development and planning, Simon Harris said.

“I would like to emphasise that in my role as the Minister for Health I am fully committed to progressing a programme of major patient safety reforms agreed by Government last November,” Minister Harris told those attending the SCA’s inaugural ‘Quality, Clinical Risk and Safety Conference’ in Dublin Castle this week.

Importantly, a National Patient Safety Office would be established in his Department later this year, he pledged. This Office would lead a programme of significant patient safety measures focused on initiatives such as new legislation, establishment of a National Patient Advocacy Service, introduction of patient safety surveillance systems, and setting up a National Advisory Council for patient safety.

“Within that programme of legislation, we will progress the licensing of both our public and our private hospitals, and we will progress the Health Information and Patient Safety Bills, which create a fora for open disclosure.”

The Minister said the new national patient experience survey was a key patient safety initiative between his Department, the HSE and HIQA, as the lead agency.

“Every year we publish the quality reports of the health service, which don’t have the voice of the patient in it,” he commented.

“I am pleased to inform you that I intend to include the findings from the national patient experience survey in the report of the National Healthcare Quality Reporting System which we publish in the DoH on an annual basis. I think this will add another dimension to the important information contained in this report.”

Lloyd Mudiwa

Click here to view the full article which appeared in Irish Medical Times