A recently published report highlights the shortcomings in care provided by the NHS. Peter Walsh, Joanne Hughes and James Titcombe emphasise how millions could be saved if people were empowered early on to have their needs met without the need to turn to litigation
A report published by the Harmed Patients Alliance, “Signpost to Nowhere?” the case for funded independent advocacy, advice and information for patients and families following patient safety incidents” shines a bright light on this neglected issue and offers a way forward.
The report points out the irony of the NHS focus on “just” culture when it is prepared to abandon the people it has harmed in this way. It suggests that the NHS owes a “moral duty of care ” to attend to the needs it creates for people affected by avoidable harm in the NHS to support their wellbeing, trust in the NHS and their relationship with it. As the “Harmed Patients Pathway” – a project by the charity Action against Medical Accidents (AvMA) and the Harmed Patients Alliance points out, access to independent advice and advocacy is one of those needs the harm event creates. But it is probably the biggest and most glaring gap.