NHS: Negligence

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 29th January 2020.

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Photo of Desmond Swayne Desmond Swayne Conservative, New Forest West

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will bring forward legislative proposals to remove the requirement to fund compensation in claims of clinical negligence on the basis it will be used for private, not NHS care.

Photo of Nadine Dorries Nadine Dorries The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care

Holding answer received on 27 January 2020

The cost of clinical negligence claims in 2018/19 was £2.36 billion, up from around £0.5 billion in 2006-7, and is now approximately 1.8% of total health expenditure. These continued year-on-year rises in costs are eating progressively into resources available for front-line care; this is unsustainable. The rises are despite our substantial safety programmes.

This is a complex and sensitive issue. The Department is working intensively across Government and with the National Health Service to explore possible options, looking at all the drivers of cost. We will provide an update in due course.

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