Future hospital report fuels seven day service debate

Professor Keith Willett, NHS England’s National Clinical Director for Acute Episodes of Care, has welcomed a report by the Royal College of Physicians’ Future Hospital Commission.

The report, entitled Future Hospital: Caring For Medical Patients, sets out the Commission’s vision for hospital services structured around the needs of patients, both now and in the future.

Professor Keith Willett, who also chairs NHS England’s Urgent and Emergency Care Review steering group said: “We welcome this report from the Royal College of Physicians, as Royal Colleges and their members have a crucial role to play in designing a new system that is sustainable and fit to meet future challenges.

“The report rightly highlights the need for changes to how we organise and deliver hospital care and treatment that is safe, effective and meets the needs of patients, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

“Many of the issues highlighted in the report align strongly with the concepts and emerging principles set out in the Urgent and Emergency Care Review and we welcome this important contribution to the debate.

“We will look at the report’s recommendations very carefully and consider how they fit with the wider potential offered by multidisciplinary working across primary and secondary care and the community.”

The Commission’s recommendations have been drawn from the very best of our hospital services, taking examples of existing innovative, patient-centred services to develop a comprehensive model of hospital care that meets the future needs of patients, as well as now.

The report comes as the NHS Services, Seven Day Services Forum, reaches a significant milestone with its five work streams giving their initial findings as they continue to gather evidence on the potential to move towards seven-days-a-week services.

The Forum, set up by Professor Sir Bruce Keogh, is due to issue its own findings in the autumn.