The duty of candour system in healthcare facilities is currently under review after concerns were raised about how it is being interpreted and used to communicate with patients and families. Care Home Professional reports that inconsistencies have been found in the way that the system is monitored and enforced in health and social care settings.

The duty of candour is a professional responsibility to be open and honest with patients and their families in the event of a clinical incident. This is defined as an error in the treatment or care that causes, or has the potential to cause, harm or distress. The healthcare professional may apologise and explain, and take action to put things right.

However, any apology or subsequent action is not seen as an admission of liability. If necessary, any concerns or complaints should be escalated to a more senior member of staff. 

Minister for Mental Health and Women’s Health Strategy, Maria Caulfield, said: “I spent 20 years working as a nurse in the NHS, and I know how important it is that health and care providers are open with patients and their loved ones – especially if something has gone wrong.”

She added: “I want to ensure that our system of duty of candour is kept up to date, so I urge anyone with views or experience to respond to the call for evidence to help inform our review, which will ensure that honesty and integrity remain at the heart of our health and social care services.”

The duty of candour system in the health and social care sectors is under review by the government, with a report expected in June. Various viewpoints will be sought and considered during the process. 

2024-05-22T16:19:12+00:00May 22nd, 2024|Blog|
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