Patient Rights and the NHS-#NHSPatients

21 January 2014

Patient Rights and the NHS-#NHSPatients was created to talk to people who feel that they had nobody at the NHS to listen to them when something went wrong .The question of patient rights is an issue that continually comes up during out conversations with patients so we want to hear your views on whether the collective patient voice and patient rights are currently being protected by the NHS or whether improvements can be made.

Patient rights are a critical part of the NHS and in meeting this objective listening to patients first and foremost is a clear way to ensure those rights are always protected. This is because if patients have an active part and say in how NHS services are run, it arguably helps better protect their own rights and empowering them in the most effective way possible.

Transparency & Accountability

The NHS constitution itself speaks of the importance of transparency within the decision making process in the NHS and in the work they do; if something does go wrong, this transparency is combined with accountability so that public, patients and staff all know where they stand and that importantly the rights of the patient are never jeopardised.

It is a two way process. Patient rights entail the right to receive quality treatment and for transparency and accountability to be part of that service, but it also means that it is the duty of patients themselves to provide helpful feedback about the service quality they receive. Importantly, it is encouraged by the NHS itself that this feedback should be both positive as well as negative and is completely anonymous. A lot of people who call through to are sometimes worried that a complaint or negative feedback will affect the care they or a loved one receive. This is not the case.

Listening to the Patient believes that listening to the patient is the most important element of what patient rights represents as a whole. Silence is not the answer. cares because only by raising issues of concern can the relationship between patient and the NHS service be improved and highlight faults and areas of clinical care and treatment where change might be needed.

While patients admire what the NHS does they are not sure that the NHS will listen to what they have to say if they raise their concerns. Whilst many patients have a positive experience of care within the NHS itself, the very nature of what patient rights means as a whole is that the NHS wants to listen, and wants to encourage improvements in its relationship with patients especially where certain areas need improvement-whether it is maternity services, accident and emergency or outpatient care.

Listening to You was created to listen to talk to people who feel that they had nobody at the NHS to listen to them when something went wrong. Members of the public who call through to us often want to raise an issue within NHS care so that somebody else is not affected the way their and their loved ones have been. Sometimes they call through to us to make a medical negligence claim because a financial settlement is needed to rebuild their life and to take care of their family.

In light of recent public inquiries and greater media attention, the NHS wants to improve its ability to listen and improve more than ever. wants to hear from patients who can contribute their own thoughts and experiences about how the NHS can listen more. will be setting up a number of polls to better understand exactly what patients want from their relationship with the NHS.

To get involved, send us your thoughts through email at, Google Plus, Facebook or on our popular Twitter feed using the hashtag #NHSPatients