17 January 2011
John Black, President of the Royal College of Surgeons, said:
Equality and excellence: Liberating the NHS
Greater choice and control
“We welcome proposals to extend patient choice and improve care by focusing on clinical outcomes. Referral to a team led by a named consultant is essential for developing trust and confidence between the patient and surgeon. However, continuity of care is crucial and patient option should not allow quality to deteriorate by breaking up the pathway from initial diagnosis through to treatment.
In terms of providers, we believe a level playing field should exist, meaning all providers supporting the entire range of clinical standards of modern surgery, including education and training and making outcomes available to aid the profession and patient choice.”
Liberating the NHS: An Information Revolution
“For a number of years surgeons have been at the forefront of data collection, using it to drive improvements in outcomes for patients. We welcome the intention to use existing data sources within the NHS to reflect what is happening in hospitals, and the importance placed on national audit, with participation seen as a “professional norm”.
Much work will be required to ensure that the NHS can make use of outcomes information in a way that is meaningful to patients, doctors, commissioners and politicians. Investment will be required to ensure clinicians can engage with, and take responsibility for, the accuracy and quality of information in the NHS and beyond.”