The NHS Patient Safety Strategy published in July 2019 set an ambition for all NHS staff to have a foundation in patient safety as well committing the NHS to developing experts to lead on patient safety in each trust. The introduction of ‘patient safety specialists’ is a key step in professionalising patient safety in the NHS.
NHS Improvement asked NHS organisations to identify, by June 2020, at least one person from their existing employees as their patient safety specialist. Training for these specialists will be based on the national patient safety syllabus being developed with Health Education England.
Working with representatives from a few NHS trusts, patient safety partners (patient and public voice representatives) and clinical commissioning groups, NHS Improvement have drafted the requirements for a patient safety specialist to help organisations identify the most appropriate person(s) for the role.