Start your claim

May 10th 2013

Medical Negligence

Investigation reveals 762 ‘Preventable’ Safety Incidents in NHS Hospitals

Investigation reveals 762 ‘Preventable’ Safety Incidents in NHS Hospitals

A recent BBC investigation reported on BBC Radio 4's The World at One, has found that between 2009 to 2012, there have been 762 Never Events within England’s Hospitals. Never Events are defined as "serious, largely preventable patient safety incidents that should not occur if the available preventative measures have been implemented[1]". Examples of Never Events include incidents where wrong body parts have been operated on or where foreign objects have been left inside a patient following surgery.

A recent BBC investigation reported on BBC Radio 4’s The World at One, has found that between 2009 to 2012, there have been 762 Never Events within England’s Hospitals. Never Events are defined as “serious, largely preventable patient safety incidents that should not occur if the available preventative measures have been implemented[1]”. Examples of Never Events include incidents where wrong body parts have been operated on or where foreign objects have been left inside a patient following surgery.

Through Freedom of Information requests to NHS Trusts, the BBC found that the majority of mistakes fell largely into four categories as follows:

  1. 322 cases of foreign objects left inside patients during/following operations;
  2. 214 cases of surgery on the wrong body part;
  3. 73 cases of feeding or medication tubes being inserted into patients’ lungs; and
  4. 58 cases of wrong implants or prostheses being fitted.

The total reported Never Events in each NHS Trust makes damning reading. The reported Never Events varies between NHS Trusts with the Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust reporting the largest amount of Never Events during the relevant period with 15.[2]

The accuracy of the data obtained is uncertain as the reporting of a Never Event relies on the openness and complete recording of events by those involved.

Sanctions that may be applied following a Never Event. For example the hospital may have to reimburse the costs of a procedure to the NHS Trust, the Trust may be responsible for the patients long term care and compensation and may also have future funding withdrawn.

In comment to the BBC, NHS England admitted the figures were too high and said it had introduced new measures to ensure patient safety.

Only time will tell the effectiveness of the “new measures” and what exactly they are. However, if history is anything to go by, one can be sceptical as to the effect of the new measures.  The statistics of Never Events during 2009 to 2010 reported by The National Patient Safety Agency, details 111 Never Events[3]. In comparison to the statistics for 2009 to 2012, that represents a lower yearly average of Never Events for 2009 to 2010. At that time, the then Health Minister Simon Burns commented that unsafe care must not be tolerated and informed the BBC that a system of disincentives would be introduced[4]. Those disincentives do not appear to have tackled the problem, and the problem of Never Events has increased.

If you have experienced a Never Event or are unhappy with any treatment provided or omitted, please feel free to contact a member of our experienced medical negligence team.

 


[1] National Patient Safety Agency, ‘Never Events – Framework: Update for 2010-11′, March 2010. Available at http://www.nrls.npsa.nhs.uk/resources/?entryid45=68518

[2] http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-22466496

[3] http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-11504808

[4] http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-11504808

What Our Clients Say

trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star

"Brillant service"

Brillant service , from start to finish definitely recommend hudgells solicitors all the hard work is done for you wouldn’t hesitate to use them again or recommend them

LeannFebruary 21, 2020

trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star

"Hudgell Solicitors have given me…"

Hudgell Solicitors have given me outstanding service and support through a difficult time. They have assisted me in claiming compensation which they made the journey of getting it as easy as possible.

KatieFebruary 14, 2020

trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star

"Couldn't be easier"

Couldn't be easier. From the initial call the whole process was handled smoothly and effortlessly.

Kevin RobertFebruary 14, 2020

trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star

"Amazing !!"

I felt relaxed through the whole process, i was made to feel confident in winning my case which i would like to add i did 😁 .. the company kept me informed all the way through by emails aswell as telephone calls, i would highly recomend to everyone needing expert…

LesleyFebruary 11, 2020

trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star

"Really happy with the service I had…"

Really happy with the service I had from Hudgells & Alex was great!

Natalie PayneFebruary 10, 2020

trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star

"Claim resolved quickly and efficiently"

The lawyer was quick to respond and always kept me updated on progress. Everything was resolved efficiently. I would certainly recommend them to family and friends.

Lulu BFebruary 04, 2020

trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star

"There when ever I needed to ask a…"

There when ever I needed to ask a question, very informative, brilliant job definitely use them again if I needed too

KatieFebruary 03, 2020

trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star

"Thank you Sarah Kidd"

Sarah Kidd was fantastic she give me the best advice always keeping me up to date with everything that was going on

Christopher DixonJanuary 31, 2020

trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star

"It took over 3 years to resolve my case…"

It took over 3 years to resolve my case and Hudgell supported me throughout with great sensitivity and professionalism. My caseworker, Gemma, always kept me updated and was easily reached if l had questions to ask. Can wholeheartedly recommend Hudgell.

Robert WebsterJanuary 31, 2020

trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star

"Every time I phoned my call was…"

Every time I phoned my call was answered in a polite manner and I got answers to my questions.

KhalidJanuary 30, 2020

trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star

"Anthony and his team at Hudgell…"

Anthony and his team at Hudgell solicitors are extremely professional and caring People. From the first phone conversation right through to completion i was always kept updated, if i had any concerns and contacted them, they were always happy to listen and put my mind at rest. I would highly…

Mrs lisa martinJanuary 21, 2020

trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star

"Excellent service"

Great service . Made me feel at ease . Proffesional and very quick to respond to any questions or concerns I would highly reccomend

LesleyJanuary 21, 2020

trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star

"Excellent service"

Excellent service

JensonJanuary 21, 2020

trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star

"Excellent service"

Excellent service, Alex Garven was most helpful in dealing with my claim. Many thanks for his hard work in getting a result for me,. It took quite a while but during that time I received regular progress updates and a quick response if I had any queries .

Jill ElliottJanuary 15, 2020

trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star

"Lauren Dale"

Lauren Dale was so sensitive when dealing with my mums claim and she totally understood what i really wanted from the outcome. she kept me fully informed of everything, as and when it happened. I cannot thank her enough for her help and understanding on such a sensitive case. 5…

Jane from North YorkshieJanuary 11, 2020

trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star

"Excellent Service"

Excellent, professional and friendly solicitors. It was a very simple process and they kept in constant contact to update me on any developments. Would definitely recommend.

Philippa January 09, 2020

trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star

"Could not have been simpler or easier"

Could not have been simpler or easier, they did everything required and more. Nice, pleasant to talk to, they do all the leg work, put everything into context and resolve as quick as possible. Hopefully will not have to use again but if a situation arises then would not hesitate…

DarrenJanuary 08, 2020

trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star

"Very helpful and always kept in touch…"

Very helpful and always kept in touch via email through the while process. Highly recommended

Joseph Conrad Waudby January 07, 2020

trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star trustpilot-star

"Brilliant customer service"

Brilliant customer service, always will contact you as they say they will. Have been very helpful with my case and explained the process thoroughly, very easy to understand. Would definitely recommend.

Julia MatildaJanuary 07, 2020