Less than 0.5% of safety incidents reported in 2008-9 came from general practice

BMJ 2010; 340 doi: (Published 12 February 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;340:c885
  1. Jacqui Wise
  1. 1London

    General practice lacks a safety reporting culture with less than 0.5% of mistakes and near misses reported to the NHS safety watchdog coming from this sector, says the health and social care regulator.

    In its first annual report to parliament on the state of health care and adult social care in England the Care Quality Commission says that although 90% of patient contacts take place at GP practices, only 3417 (0.3%) incidents (out of a total 1 061 934) were reported from this sector in the year to July 2009 compared with 693 700 from hospitals. The commission says it is crucial that organisations report incidents so that they can learn and put things right.

    The overall reporting of serious incidents to the National Patient Safety Agency has improved greatly from 922 552 incidents in 2007-8 to 1 061 934 in 2008-9. But the reporting rate continues to vary across organisations. For example, reporting from primary care trusts with hospital beds varies more than 20-fold.

    Maggie Kemmner, head …

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