Friends and Family Test
From the beginning of February 2013 the Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust has been asking adult in-patients, patients attending the Emergency Department, not being admitted, and all Maternity patients whether they’d recommend the Trust to friends or family in need of similar care. This is a Government initiative that was introduced across the whole of the NHS from 1 April 2013 and forms part of a CQUIN (a Commissioning for Quality and Innovation payment).
The Friends and Family Test does not replace any of our existing and more detailed monitoring of patient opinion. It’s an extra measure that’s meant to give us a very quick snapshot of how our patients view the care they received with us. Every Trust in the country is asking exactly the same questions and results were published nationally on 30 July 2013. The aim is for hospitals to be able to identify and celebrate what’s working well, as well as picking up and resolving potential problems.
The new test was based on a recommendation by the Nursing and Care Quality Forum, and announced by the government in May 2012. When he launched the service, David Cameron said: “in every hospital, patients are going to be able to answer a simple question: whether they’d want a friend of relative to be treated there in their hour of need.”
All patients attending the Emergency Department, and not being admitted, all Maternity patients and patients over 16 years of age being discharged home from hospital are being given the freepost Friends and Family Test questionnaire to complete and return in the box provided or put in the post once they get home. No personal data is requested and responses are completely anonymous.
From September 2013 the system for the Emergency Department will change and all patients attending the department will receive a token at Reception and be asked to place it into one of the boxes on leaving the department to register their response to the Friends and Family Test question. Patient feedback comment cards will also be available for patients to add a general comment on their care.
If you have any queries about the Friends and Family Test please contact:
rde-tr.PALS@nhs.net or telephone 01392 402093.