Report (2nd Day)
Health and Social Care Bill
Baroness Pitkeathley (Labour)
My Lords, the noble Lord, Lord Faulks, speaks with his extensive legal experience, which I certainly could not match, but I have very extensive experience of working with patients and their families. It is in that respect that I support this amendment. I particularly support what noble Lords have said about seeking culture change in the NHS.
One thing that gets in the way of that culture change is the anxiety about why patients want candour and the truth. My experience is not that they seek redress or even want to pursue legal action-time and again any consultation with patients will show you that that is not their aim. Their aim, almost always, is to achieve closure after a distressing incident. What a patient said to me a year or so ago is typical: "I just wanted them to admit that something had gone wrong and say sorry. I knew it could not bring my brother back but it would have helped us come to terms with it". That is what patients are seeking and that is what this amendment will help to achieve. We can all agree that if we are to achieve more culture change, we must move towards a greater degree of openness throughout the NHS.