Friends and Family Test

Information for patients on the Friends and Family Test - link to NHS ChoicesThe Friends and Family Test (FFT) is an important feedback tool that supports the fundamental principle that people who use NHS services should have the opportunity to provide feedback on their experience.

It asks people if they would recommend the services they have used and offers a range of responses. When combined with supplementary follow-up questions, the FFT provides a mechanism to highlight both good and poor patient experience. This kind of feedback is vital in transforming NHS services and supporting patient choice.

Since it was initially launched in April 2013, the FFT has been rolled out in phases to most NHS-funded services in England, giving all patients the opportunity to leave feedback on their care and treatment.

The FFT has produced around 25 million pieces of feedback so far – and the total rises by over a million a month – making it the biggest source of patient opinion in the world. Scores so far have told us that at least nine out of ten patients would recommend the services they used to their loved ones. Patient comments also identify areas where improvements can be made so that providers can make care and treatment better for everyone.

See section on Implementing FFT Guidance for details of how the FFT works.

The feedback gathered through the FFT is being used in NHS organisations across the country to stimulate local improvement and empower staff to carry out the sorts of changes that make a real difference to patients and their care.

While the results will not be statistically comparable against other organisations because of the various data collection methods, FFT will continue to provide a broad measure of patient experience that can be used alongside other data to inform service improvement and patient choice.

Publishing results of the Friends and Family Test

The results of the FFT are published at monthly intervals on both NHS England and NHS Choices websites.

The Friends and Family Test for staff

From 1 April 2014, all NHS trusts providing acute, community, ambulance and mental health services in England were required to implement the FFT for staff. Guidance to support organisations administering the Staff FFT is published on the Staff Friends and Family Test page.

Further information/supporting publications

Useful information for staff

Useful information for patients and the public

News stories

Getting smarter about patient insight – Dan Wellings

In the latest of our series of blogs marking Friends and Family Test Spotlight Week, NHS England’s Head of Insight and Feedback explains the importance of understanding and using patient feedback: The NHS is a world leader when it comes to collecting insight and feedback from its users. We have a number of excellent national […]

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The Friends and Family Test is driving up standards – Gillian Radcliffe

In the latest of our blogs marking Friends and Family Test Spotlight Week, NHS England’s FFT Communications and Engagement Manager, reveals the passion behind a plethora of FFT Award entries: At our Insight and Feedback Conference in Leeds tomorrow, five NHS providers will carry off some very well-deserved crystal trophies in recognition of their fabulous […]

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Patients are not just numbers and targets – Katie Clarke-Day

In the second of our series of blogs to mark Friends and Family Test Spotlight Week, a patient living with long term conditions explains why feedback is so important: In an average year I have 34 appointments, roughly once every 10 days. This is without emergency A&E visits, blood tests etcetera Consequently, the NHS is […]

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Hospital radio helps broadcast the message on patient feedback

Many hospital radio stations around the country are taking part in a national promotion to raise awareness of the importance of patient feedback to improve NHS services. As part of this week’s mini-campaign to put the spotlight on the Friends and Family Test, NHS England has produced a range of audio packages that volunteers on […]

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Spotlight on patient feedback driving NHS improvements

A campaign launched today aims to raise awareness of how patient feedback is helping drive continuous improvement in NHS services. The Friends and Family Test (FFT) Spotlight Week will include a range of promotional activities across England over the next five days aimed at giving fresh impetus to FFT which has already gathered 17million pieces […]

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Throwing the spotlight on the Friends and Family Test – Anu Singh

In the first of a series of blogs we are running to coincide with the Friends and Family Test Spotlight Week, NHS England’s Director of Patient and Public Participation and Insight explains why we are focussing on this vital patient feedback: When it comes to this important area of our work at NHS England, we […]

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Spotlight on Friends and Family Test

The spotlight will be turned on the Friends and Family Test next week (14 to 18 March) in an initiative aimed at boosting the number of people giving feedback on their NHS care and treatment. There will be a five-day mini-campaign across England with a range of promotional activities in the community – such as […]

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Closing date extended for Friends and Family Test Awards

There is now an extra week to submit your entries for the Friends and Family Test Awards 2016. NHS England has extended the deadline from 8 January to Friday 15 January 2016 after requests from some providers who were prevented from preparing their entries due to the festive holidays. Full details about the Awards – […]

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Friends and Family Test Awards 2016

To celebrate the positive changes to healthcare that are being produced through patient feedback, we want to find and recognise the services and people in the NHS who are making a real difference by organising the Friends and Family Test Awards 2016. The Friends and Family Test is now operating across most of the NHS […]

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Making NHS patient feedback more inclusive

Updated guidance has been published to help make the NHS’s biggest patient feedback tool, the Friends and Family Test, more inclusive. The new guidance covers services across the NHS that are provided to children and young people – with special provisions for looked after children – as well as patients with learning disabilities, dementia, language […]

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