3.1.1 Update: A move towards patient-centred care?
David Lee of Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, commenting on recent changes towards patient-centred care, said ‘The modernisation agenda stemming from the National Health Service Plan (Department of Health, 2000) is requiring major shifts in organisational and cultural thinking. The patient is increasingly being placed first and at the centre of every aspect of health care. In essence, health care and indeed ward routines are now expected to be driven by the needs of patients and users of the services, rather than by caregivers. This is closely related to the need for the Health Service, and the staff who work within it, to be responsible and accountable for the patient's experience.’ Clinical governance is the term used to encompass, among other things, ensuring quality of care, learning from mistakes and reducing risk to patients. All staff are now expected to share responsibility for clinical governance. David Lee also drew our attention to the existence of independent bodies such as the Commission for Health Improvement which are also indications of the move towards making health services responsive to the wishes of patients.