I’m deeply concerned that a recent review into local NHS services found 1 in 5 patients received care that wasn’t good enough. This is completely unacceptable and must change – as University Hospitals Leicester and other local NHS services have rightly acknowledged.
Since 2010/11, mortality rates at our hospitals have been slightly higher than the national average, which is why UHL asked for this review to be done. The review looked at what happened to 381 patients who died within 30 days of being admitted to hospital as an emergency. You can read coverage in the Mercury here.
I welcome the fact that the review’s results have been published and the families of the patients who received substandard care have been contacted: their needs and concerns must come first. Complete openness and transparency in the NHS is essential so staff can learn lessons when things go wrong, and patients can have confidence that everything possible is being done to improve the quality of their care.
I’ll be working with UHL, our local GPs and community services to ensure all the necessary steps are now taken. In particular, we must make sure that staff are properly trained to discuss end of life care with patients and their families, communication between clinicians improves, and that UHL and GPs work together better so patients don’t fall through the gaps when they go in and out of hospital.