As people who work in healthcare, we must always ensure that we apply the principles of being open as part of our daily practice. This means that when incidents happen, we should ensure that we are open and transparent to the patient and their families or carers. This includes providing them with information about what happened, how it happened (if we can), what to expect next and what support we can provide to them. 

If a patient has been significantly harmed whilst under our care or receiving treatment from us which was unexpected, duty of candour is to be applied. Duty of candour is a regulation set out from the Care Quality Commission whereby we provide a written and verbal apology to the patient and their families or carers.

As part of the Kinnect project, the being open and duty of candour work stream aims to provide you with support to understand the principles of being open and duty of candour and how you can apply them to your practice. The work also aims to improve the experience for patients, families and carers when unexpected events occur so they receive a compassionate and caring response from our Trust.

The aim is to ensure that the principles of being open are embedded across all of our services and improve the quality and application of duty of candour.

The project aims are due to be in place by April 2021, however some of the work such as embedding and reviewing may continue into the new financial year.

You can get involved by contacting any of the work stream leads:

  • Helen Moore, Head of Quality, Sefton
  • Dr Deb Behera, Associate Medical Director for Quality and Safety and Consultant Psychiatrist for Knowsley
  • Sam Ashton Mort, Quality Matron, Knowsley
  • Michael Keeley, Quality Matron, St Helens
  • Paula Carrington, Team Manager, Knowsley

As of June 2020, the work stream has a full project plan identifying areas of progression required to achieve the outcomes.

Over the next quarter, the workstream will focus on understanding what training is available and how we can strengthen our reporting structure to improve the quality of duty of candour letters.