Improving Health and Wellbeing

Duty of Candour

Woman wearing black top

A culture of openness, honesty and transparency

Occasionally people in our care are involved in a safety incident. A small number of these incidents cause harm.

When things go wrong, we have a duty to inform our patients and their families what has happened. This is very much part of our culture.

We are committed to talking to patients and their carers at a very early stage to understand what happened and, where necessary, learn the lessons that will prevent it happening again to improve the safety of our future patients.

Involving and informing you

If something happens, we will investigate the incident and:

  • ask how much the patient and their relatives or carers wish to be involved in the investigation process;
  • review the patient’s medical and nursing notes;
  • talk to the staff involved in the patient’s care;
  • identify the cause(s) of the incident;
  • share our findings with the patient, their family or carers;
  • share learning and improvements across the Trust;
  • let the patient and their family or carers ask any questions.

A member of the investigation team will meet with the patient to talk to them about what went wrong. This will usually be the consultant or nurse looking after them. The patient’s family or a friend can attend this meeting and be part of these conversations.

The level of investigation we do will depend on the seriousness of the incident and may take up to 45 working days (nine weeks). We will keep the patient and their family informed of our progress along the way.

If you have any questions or want to raise a concern with the Trust then please contact Hilary Gledhill, Director of Nursing, Quality and Patient Experience on tel. 01482 301757 or email hilarygledhill@nhs.net.