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Considering reasonable standards

28 January 2021
Volume 30 · Issue 2


John Tingle, Lecturer in Law, Birmingham Law School, University of Birmingham, discusses some recent patient safety reports that have important implications for patients and for all those who work in the NHS

The year 2021 has not begun well, with the media full of reports of the difficulties and pressures that our hospitals are encountering with managing the COVID-19 pandemic. The NHS has once again risen to the challenge of COVID-19 and staff are making heroic efforts to cope. However, working in battlefront conditions brings with it patient safety challenges and quality-of-care issues.

Lintern (2021) reported comments made to the Independent by Professor Ted Baker, Chief Inspector of Hospitals at the Care Quality Commission (CQC):

‘I know that staff are doing their utmost to deliver the best quality of care they can, but the challenges they face are enormous and the burden they are carrying is heavy.

‘The danger is that poor care becomes normalised due to Covid—and when incidents where staff haven't been able to deliver good care aren't reported, this normalisation moves closer.’

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