News story

Safer care for patients

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

The Health and Social Care (Safety and Quality) Act 2015 that aims to improve safety and quality of care has received Royal Assent.

Among the measures introduced by the act is a duty on health and adult social care providers to share information about a person’s care with other health and care professionals. This means that doctors and other professionals providing a person’s care and treatment will have the information they need so they can treat patients more effectively.

Relevant health and adult social care bodies will also be required to use a consistent identifier - the NHS Number - when processing and/or sharing information about an individual for their direct care. This will enable better connection of health and care records as people move between services, so relevant information is shared, meaning safer and better aligned care.

Health Minister Dr Dan Poulter said:

Mid Staffs was a turning point for the NHS and the measures in this Act are a major step forward in making the NHS safer. This Act will ensure doctors and nurses have access to the most up to date and accurate patient information and ensure that safety is embedded throughout the health and social care sector.