Recommendations for a new Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch

The new patient safety investigation function will help build a link between investigations and improvement.

In July 2015, the Secretary of State for Health announced that he wanted to create an independent patient safety investigation function, the Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch (HSIB).

What the HSIB will do

HSIB’s primary purpose is to:

  • support local NHS organisations to conduct their own consistent high quality investigations
  • conduct a small number of its own investigations to help establish the causality of what happened and make recommendations to enable improvements to care and patient safety

HSIB will operate independently of government and the healthcare system, including us.

How the HSIB is being created

An expert advisory group, chaired by our Director of Patient Safety, Dr Mike Durkin, has published a report making a series of recommendations to the government on the scope and the principles of the HSIB's operation.

The recommendations are based on the expertise of the advisory group members and the evidence they heard from hundreds of patients, families, NHS staff and other stakeholders with experience of investigations or harm caused during NHS care.

The Department of Health is currently undertaking a recruitment process to appoint a chief investigator to lead HSIB. The successful candidate will take on full responsibility for the work of HSIB, determining how it will operate and when it will begin its investigation work.

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