Key points

  • The scan shows that supporting patient involvement in safety improvement will not solve all the safety issues in the NHS, nor does it negate the responsibility of health systems and professionals to provide safe care. But involving patients and carers can be an important component of broader strategies.
    • As patients come to be seen and treated as partners in their care, there is significant potential to make real gains in patient safety.
    • The main approaches to involving patients in safety improvement that the scan identifies include:
      • collecting feedback retrospectively
      • asking patients to help plan broad service change
      • encouraging patients to help identify risks when they are receiving care.

    Much is being done to improve safety in healthcare. Patients themselves can help to safeguard their own wellbeing and promote change. This evidence scan describes ways that patients have been involved in improving safety.

    The scan addresses the questions:

    • How have patients and carers been involved in improving safety in healthcare?
    • Is there any evidence that patient involvement leads to improved safety?

    Further reading

    Improvement project

    Putting the patient at the heart of patient safety

    Improvement project

    This project assessed the effectiveness of using a patient measure of safety to determine factors...

    You might also like...

    Journal article

    A direct observation of pain scale use in five video-recorded palliative care consultations

    Journal article

    Observational study of pain scale use in five video-recorded palliative care consultations.

    Press release

    Pent up demand for care risks further inflating NHS backlog

    Press release

    New analysis shows that while the waiting list for hospital care continues to grow, so too does the...


    The full health and care data strategy must address its shortcomings


    Building trust, addressing health inequalities and improving social care data are critical if the...

    Kjell-bubble-diagramArtboard 101 copy

    Get social

    @francespushkin Thanks for sharing this!

    Follow us on Twitter
    Kjell-bubble-diagramArtboard 101

    Work with us

    We look for talented and passionate individuals as everyone at the Health Foundation has an important role to play.

    View current vacancies
    Artboard 101 copy 2

    The Q community

    Q is an initiative connecting people with improvement expertise across the UK.

    Find out more