The response is accompanied by a statement of common purpose signed by the chairs of key organisations across the health and care system. It renews and reaffirms the commitment to the values of the NHS, as set out in the NHS Constitution, and includes pledges to work together for patients, always treat patients and their families with compassion, dignity and respect, to listen to patients and to act on feedback.
Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt said:
The events at Stafford Hospital were a betrayal of the worst kind. A betrayal of the patients, of the families, and of the vast majority of NHS staff who do everything in their power to give their patients the high quality, compassionate care they deserve.
The health and care system must change. We cannot merely tinker around the edges – we need a radical overhaul with high quality care and compassion at its heart. Today I am setting out an initial response to Robert Francis’ recommendations. But this is just the start of a fundamental change to the system.
I can pledge that every patient will be treated in a hospital judged on the quality of its care and the experience of its patients. They will be cared for in a place with a culture of zero harm, by highly trained staff with the right values and skills. And if something should go wrong, then those mistakes will be admitted, the patient told about them and steps taken to rectify them with proper accountability.
I and the chairs of key organisations involved in care have pledged to do this and make our health and care system the best and safest in the world.