At a public meeting of the Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust (ICHT) board on 30 November 2011 a proposal for the temporary transfer of the operational management of the National Reporting and Learning System (NRLS) was accepted in principle*.
The temporary transfer will take place under a Service Level Agreement. The due diligence exercise will now be finalised, in advance of the proposed April 2012 transfer date. Following the abolition of the NPSA the NHS Commissioning Board will be accountable and responsible for maintaining the Service Level Agreement for the NRLS.
From April 2012 ICHT will manage the team responsible for the existing NRLS function for a temporary period of two years. Current staffing levels supporting the NRLS will be transferred to ICHT.
During the two year period a full tendering process will be developed by the NHS Commissioning Board. This will identify the future specification of requirements for a national system to capture and analyse patient safety incident data.
Sarndrah Horsfall, Chief Executive of the National Patient Safety Agency (NPSA), commented:
"Identifying patient safety incidents and ensuring they are reported and analysed is at the heart of reducing risk in healthcare. The NRLS is at the forefront of supporting the NHS to improve the safety of patient care.
“The two year temporary transfer of the NRLS to ICHT is a vital step in strengthening the patient safety culture across the new NHS in England and Wales.
“It is important that NHS organisations continue to submit their patient safety incident reports to the NRLS to support ongoing learning. We welcome the acceptance in principle by ICHT of the temporary transfer and look forward to working closely with them.”
Further information about the proposed transfer is available from the ICHT website.
* The Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust (ICHT) board has accepted in principle and subject to at least the following conditions:
Completion of satisfactory due diligence and resolution of issues arising;
Agreement of a satisfactory Service Level Agreement (including contractual arrangements for Wales);
Agreement of a satisfactory Business Transfer Agreement;
Agreement of the full costs to transfer and manage the service;
All necessary regulatory approvals and third party consents;
The development of a comprehensive Information Management and Technology transition plan.
Notes to editors
1. Media enquiries to Matthew Grek in the NPSA Press Office:
020 7927 9362 / firstname.lastname@example.org
2. Established in 2003, the National Reporting and Learning System (NRLS) is the largest source of patient safety incident data in the world.
It is at the heart of reducing the risks of healthcare in England and Wales, enabling patient safety incident reports to be submitted to a national database and driving national improvement across the NHS. This data is then analysed to identify hazards, risks and opportunities to improve the safety of patient care.
3. The NHS Commissioning Board is nationally accountable for the outcomes achieved by the NHS. The NHS Commissioning Board will provide leadership for the new commissioning system and will provide the support and direction necessary to improve quality and patient outcomes and safeguard the core values of the NHS.
4. The Arms Length Bodies review, published in July 2010, proposed that the National Patient Safety Agency (NPSA) be abolished. The report stated that the work of the Patient Safety Division relating to reporting and learning from serious patient safety incidents (the NRLS) should move to the NHS Commissioning Board.
The proposed Health and Social Care Bill confirms the abolition of the NPSA and states that the national function for patient safety will continue within the NHS Commissioning Board and tools, guidance and support will be available to lead improvements in patient safety. A key role of the NHS Commissioning Board will be oversight of the NRLS which will continue to capture, analyse and feedback patient safety incidents to the NHS. Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust will be responsible for the day to day operation of the NRLS.
5. Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust was formed on October 1 2007 when Hammersmith Hospitals NHS Trust and St Mary’s NHS Trust merged and integrated with Imperial College London, creating one of the UK’s first academic health science centres (AHSCs).