National Institute of Health Research warns patient feedback is not being used to improve NHS services

Tuesday 14th January 2020 17:14 EST

According to a report in the Independent newspaper experts have warned that whilst the NHS is spending millions of pounds encouraging its patients to give feedback on the services they have received the information that they have provided has not being used effectively to improve medical services. A total of nine separate studies that were carried out by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) into how hospitals collect and use feedback found that widespread collection of patient comments was often “disjointed” from efforts to improve the quality of care and showed that whilst thousands of patients give hospitals their comments, their reports are often reduced to simple numbers with the NHS lacking the ability to analyse and act on those results. The newspaper quoted the NIHR report which said: “A lot of resource and energy goes into collecting feedback data but less into analysing it in ways that can lead to change, or into sharing the feedback with staff who see patients on a day-to-day basis. The costs of collecting patient feedback (ie staff time) far outweighed efforts to use the findings to drive improvement in practice at present. In many organisations, feedback about patient experience is managed in different departments from those that lead quality improvement.”

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