NHS England announces new commitments for increased openness and transparency

NHS England is to announce a raft of new measures aimed at increased public participation as part of its on-going pledge to openness and transparency.

The new commitments are being made as part of the UK’s national action plan at the Open Government Partnership’s annual summit in London today (Thursday Oct 31).

They include:

  • Publishing more clinician level data – Building on the successful publication of surgeon level data from national clinical audits across 10 specialties earlier this year, NHS England will extend the programme to new treatments and conditions (throughout 2014). This will include data from non-surgical physicians.
  • Publishing more overarching clinical indicators – For ten new clinical areas including cancer, children’s services, mental health and stroke, data will be made available to tell the public how well services are performing and meeting their needs; the first of these will be available by summer 2014 with more available over the following 12 months.
  • Extending the Friends and Family Test – The successful programme that asks patients whether they would recommend the hospital services they used to friends and family will be extended to cover GP practices, community and mental health services in December 2014 and all other NHS services by 2015.
  • Linking clinical data from GPs – By June 2014 the data from GP practices will be linked to data from all hospitals. This will allow us to develop and publish new insights into the quality of services and to better understand the way services interact – an issue that we know is important for patients.

The new measures will be announced as NHS England throws its full and committed support behind an international demand for openness in public office.

The pledge comes as the Prime Minister calls for more transparent government in the world.

David Cameron will tell the 60 nations represented at the Open Government Partnership there must be more openness and transparency in public office.

Sir Bruce Keogh, NHS England’s National Clinical Director who will be addressing the summit, said: “Not only do we endorse the Prime Minister’s call for openness and transparency, but we would encourage the rest of the world to follow our lead.”

Tim Kelsey, NHS England’s National Director for Patients and Information, said: “This is the single most important step forward in transparency for healthcare anywhere in the world.

“The English healthcare system is already one of the most transparent in the world – publishing more information than any other country.  But these new measures will transform outcomes, put citizens at the centre of everything we do and will provide the means by which NHS England will be at the cutting edge of medical science.

“Greater transparency will empower patients and citizens to hold the health service to account and at the same time support life sciences research so that more life-saving treatments can be found.

“I am delighted to announce further ground-breaking commitments to making the NHS first for patients, enterprise and science.

“No country in the world has made such commitments to giving patients a voice so that their services can be improved.”

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  1. Pearl Baker says:

    I agree with more transparency, however it has to be backed up with accountability. The Law Commission Consultation Document, How do we monitor the Professionals appears to gave died without trace. My response to this was more Publicity in Public Area of ‘how to complain, and who to’ would be a start, the second most important one is the current practice of referring any complain to a complaints officer, who is not a member of a registered council. The response should include who provided them with their response, and their registration number of any council they are members of. My third response was all correspondence from any individual from any Statutory Authority should not only include their name, but registration as well. The fourth was all members in the work place should display their name and registration on their person for Public Attention, includes GP and their BMA registration.

    The LA GP Practices and others should hold a register for the Public to access at anytime, and should be made aware of this by Postings in Public Area.

  2. Anonymous says:

    It is unfortunate that my experience with NHS England provides me with any confidence regarding their commitment for transparency.

    My complaint has not been answered to my satisfaction, the investigating officer has failed to respond to my request for a progress report.

    The recent correspondence from the CQC (MHA) Operations Manager response to my concerns on free accommodation under section 117 of the 1983 Mental Health Act quoted the most recent High Court Judgement by Judge Mostyn as ‘done and dusted’ unfortunately this case bears no resemblance to the case in question presented to England. Must do better than this, if NHS England is to inspire the Public