Quality and safety of patient care
In tough times skills to improve health care will be in demand
A group of 80 medical students from European countries will be among the 2000 delegates attending the International Forum on Quality and Safety in Healthcare, which takes place in Nice, France, this April. These pioneers will be learning about the ways in which care for patients is less safe than it should and could be; how patient safety can be improved; and about the emerging discipline of quality improvement.
The past decade has seen substantial improvements in access to health services and fewer deaths from the commonest causes. Longitudinal studies of public attitudes to public services have seen markedly reduced public concern about the NHS, with fewer people seeing the NHS as one of the big “issues facing Britain.”1 On the other hand, as in other countries, we have seen evidence that the quality and safety of health care falls short,2 sometimes far short, of an acceptable standard.3 And the