Intended for healthcare professionals


“Safe spaces” for conducting healthcare failure investigations will increase litigation, MPs hear

BMJ 2018; 361 doi: (Published 25 June 2018) Cite this as: BMJ 2018;361:k2776
  1. Clare Dyer
  1. The BMJ

Government plans to create “safe spaces” for NHS investigations into care failings in England will harm patients’ trust and drive more into litigation, the head of a leading patients’ safety charity has told MPs and peers.1

Peter Walsh, chief executive of Action Against Medical Accidents (AvMA), said that the provisions in the draft Health Service Safety Investigations Bill would “destroy confidence and create an adversarial culture.”

He was giving evidence to a committee of MPs and lords examining the draft bill, which creates a new independent Health Service Safety Investigations Body (HSSIB), expected to carry out around 30 major safety investigations a year. As with air accident investigations, the idea is that a safe space would encourage all those involved in the incident to give evidence candidly.

Jeremy Hunt, the health …

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