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Education and training for patient safety

Improving Safety through Education and Training is the first report to focus on how education and training interventions can actively improve the safety of patients.

The independent report by the Commission on Education and Training for Patient Safety – supported by academic partner Imperial College – sets out the future of education and training for patient safety in the NHS over the next 10 years, making 12 recommendations to Health Education England (HEE) and the wider system.

  1. Ensure learning from patient safety data and good practice.
  2. Develop and use a common language to describe all elements of quality improvement science and human factors with respect to patient safety.
  3. Ensure robust evaluation of education and training for patient safety.
  4. Engage patients, family members, carers and the public in the design and delivery of education and training for patient safety.
  5. Supporting the duty of candour is vital and there must be high quality educational training packages available.
  6. The learning environment must support all learners and staff to raise and respond to concerns about patient safety.
  7. The content of mandatory training for patient safety needs to be coherent across the NHS.
  8. All NHS leaders need patient safety training so they can have the knowledge and tools to drive change and improvement.
  9. Education and training must support the delivery of more integrated ‘joined up’ care.
  10. Ensure increased opportunities for inter-professional learning.
  11. Principles of human factors and professionalism must be embedded across education and training.
  12. Ensure staff have the skills to identify and manage potential risks.

Patient safety should be the number one concern of all who serve patients in the NHS – the first and most important lesson they learn. We have accepted all 12 recommendations and working in partnership with key organisations across all levels in the system, are providing a leadership role in taking them forward. Our implementation plan sets out how the recommendations will be delivered and describes progress on delivery since the publication of the report, whilst recognising that there is a need for on-going discussions and collaboration with key partner organisations to ensure high quality patient safety.

To enable effective delivery, the recommendations have been grouped into four key workstreams:

  • Workstream 1: Learning and Training Environments (recommendations 1, 4, 6, 10)
  • Workstream 2: Human Factors and Culture (recommendations 2, 5, 11, 12)
  • Workstream 3: Embedding Existing Training Initiatives (recommendations 7,8)
  • Workstream 4: Supporting Joined Up Care (recommendation 9)