HIQA Patient Safety investigation report into services at Portlaoise Hospital

The Irish Society for Quality and Safety in Healthcare (ISQSH) notes the publication by HIQA of the report of the investigation into safety, quality and standards of services provided by the HSE to patients in the Midland Regional Hospital Portlaoise.

It is clear that the HSE has failed patients in its duty of care, not only by their ongoing failure to evaluate the services provided by the Midland regional Hospital, Portlaoise despite previous risks being identified but also in their failure to acknowledge patient concerns, they did not listen to patients nor did they act upon concerns raised by patients or staff.

Reacting to the publication this morning Dr Hilary Dunne said “It is clear that the HSE does not value the views of patients, the report clearly highlights the lack of and poor communication experienced by parents. The current system for feedback within the HSE has failed patients in Portlaoise and continues to fail patients in other hospitals and healthcare settings”.  She went on to say that “the ISQSH were prevented by the HSE from gathering the patient’s experience of the services they received within acute and maternity care settings, despite the fact that patient experience is a recognised and accepted measure of the quality of health services”.

Dr Dunne stated that the recommendation in today’s report for the creation of an independent patient advocacy service was welcomed and called on the Minister to create this service as a matter of urgency.  Dr Dunne said “Complaints are the amber light to all enterprises indicating that there is something wrong and yet we know that over 60% of patients are unaware of the complaints process within the hospital they attend. We set up Patient Opinion Ireland to try to address this and to provide a place where patients and family members could provide valuable feedback in an independent and transparent way. Patients need to be listened to and lessons need to be learnt from their experiences and until we do this in a transparent and open way we will continue to fail patients”.

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