Health Care Risk Report Volume 15 Issue 4 March 2009

According to the Leader page, this issue of Health Care Risk Report (HCRR) carries three views from three different experts on the question of how patient safety and clinical risk management do (or do not) fit together. There seems to be a perception among some people that patient safety is somehow replacing clinical risk management and that the latter has run its course.

According to HCRR editor, pat Anderson, “Patient safety has brought a welcome focus on the individual patient, enthusing staff who are more focused on people than figures and statistics. It offers new techniques and tools along with training course an, now, the national patient safety campaigns. The emphasis on measurement means that many trusts, particularly those involved in the Safer Patients Initiative, have been able to show real improvements in safety. However, all this does not invalidate the tried and tested techniques of risk management, which should not be left by the wayside. The wider universe of risk – encompassing everything from staff safety to business interruption – must not be forgotten. Hopefully most NHS organisations are sensible enough to encourage risk management and patient safety teams to work together for the benefit of all.”

Other matters appearing in this issue of HCRR include:

– An article by John Tingle, based on two Healthcare Commission report, that outlines what should be done to improve quality of care in accident and emergency departments.
– The first of two articles by Dr Tayza Aung, a GP from Essex, who asks whether the government’s reforms, or a drive from within the medical profession, are most likely to result in the desired improvements to the quality of primary care.
– The first of a two-part series that provides an overview of the systems and processes involved in managing the risks associated with research done in the NHS.
– An article describing what the changes to victims’ rights mean for the NHS.
– The second of two articles looking at decision making under the Mental Capacity Act 2005.

If your organisation does not currently subscribe to HCRR then please consider doing so. A subscription form can be downloaded here. You can also subscribe to the free ‘Health Care Risk Report e-zine’ newsletter.

Declaration of interest: Stuart Emslie, editor of Healthcare Governance Review, is on the editorial advisory board of, and is a regular contributor to, Health Care Risk Report.

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