The Francis Inquiry report attributes accountability for the appalling care at Stafford Hospital to the Trust Board, but also points to a systemic failure by a range of national and local organisations to respond to concerns. The report indicates that this should not be regarded as a one-off event that could not be repeated elsewhere in the NHS.
Repeated NHS restructuring was identified as an important element in the background to the failures, and with the most substantial changes to the NHS since its inception now taking place there is clearly potential for further major failings in NHS providers.
This policy briefing summarises the report and identifies some significant messages for local authorities in their health responsibilities. It will be of interest to officers and councillors in all councils, especially those in commissioning, those working with OSCs and health and wellbeing boards, in social care, and corporate policy, and relevant partners in health and the voluntary sector.
We will publish a further briefing when the government gives its detailed response to the report.
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