Responding to the publication of the Care Quality Commission’s State of Care 2018/19, Keith Conradi, Chief Investigator for the HSIB said:

“It is very encouraging that, in the face of continuously rising pressures, NHS staff are successfully protecting the safety of patients in most care settings.

“However, the CQC’s report shows the importance of timely access to NHS services, always delivered by fully skilled and trained staff, and supported by a care system that is working in a joined-up way. Patients, families and carers also need the right information to successfully navigate their local health and social care system, so they can seek and receive care in the most appropriate setting.

“As HSIB’s national safety investigations have found, these are issues that can profoundly affect the safety of patient and service users’ care. We know that when staff are overworked and overwhelmed, and resources are not sufficient to meet demand, lapses and mistakes in care become more likely. This is poor for patients and for NHS staff who aim to always deliver the very best and safest care and need systems that can effectively support them to achieve it.

“System-wide action on workforce planning and sustaining innovation and integration which has a positive impact on patient safety is to be welcomed.”