Health and Social Care Bill — Report (3rd Day) (Continued)

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 10:00 pm on 27th February 2012.

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Photo of Lord Patel Lord Patel Crossbench 10:00 pm, 27th February 2012

My Lords, I shall speak to two amendments in my name, Amendments 65 and 66. They are very simple. They regard the information on the safety of services provided by the health service. I particularly want to address the issue about patient safety.

Amendment 65 refers to the information provided. The Bill says that the Commissioning Board will provide information to those whom it "considers appropriate". I do not know why the Commissioning Board must decide who it considers appropriate; my amendment merely lists all the organisations providing healthcare to whom the information must be provided. Patient safety incidents occur mainly because of systems failure. I can give many examples, from wrong-side surgery to wrong infusions, wrong medicines reconciliation and wrong injections in the wrong side-such as a spinal injection when a particular material must not be injected spinally. Because it is a system failure, if such a patient safety incident occurs in one hospital, it is likely to occur in another. So the information must be provided to all healthcare providers and those who train doctors and nurses. I do not understand why it must be that the board must make information collected on patient safety incidents available only to those whom it "considers appropriate".

My next amendment has to do with subsection (3), which says:

"The Board may impose charges, calculated on such basis as it considers appropriate, in respect of information made available by it under subsection (2)".

Why must it charge? If it charges, we do not get the gains from the lessons learnt from patient safety incidents.

The two amendments are quite simple. I do not understand why it is not clearer.