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UK government wants to expand duty of candour

BMJ 2013; 347 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.f6972 (Published 20 November 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;347:f6972
  1. Clare Dyer
  1. 1BMJ

The UK government may enlarge its proposed new statutory duty of candour for institutions providing NHS healthcare in England, after representations from patient safety campaigners.

Ministers are asking the advice of experts on whether hospitals should be required to tell patients or their relatives that something has gone wrong if the harm was only moderate. Campaigners criticised the original proposal for the duty to cover only cases of death or serious harm.

The rethink has emerged as the health secretary for England, Jeremy Hunt, unveiled the government’s response to the report of the public inquiry into failings at Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust.1 Hunt said that he had listened to campaigners such as Peter Walsh, chief executive of Action against Medical Accidents, but was also taking expert advice to try to ensure that there …

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