Reactive statement on questions relating to Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust’s mortality data following publication of an independent report, commissioned at the Trust’s request
Stuart Richardson, Chief Executive at Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust said: “Today, we are publishing updated information on the number of deaths relating to people in our care or six months after discharge, over the past five years. Within this, we are also publishing the number of deaths relating to patient safety incident investigations, suicides, and the number of Prevention of Future Death reports issued by HM Coroner to NSFT.
“I have made it a priority for the Trust to look back on the data to see if we have missed anything and as part of our commitment to openness and transparency, we are publishing those figures today.
“However, there is still more to do as we continue to review the deaths of everyone who has had contact with our services over the past five years. Whilst we at this time cannot say how many of these deaths had learning for the Trust, we can confidently say how many people in our care died of a patient safety incident or by suicide.
“We have certainty on the number of deaths related to patient safety incidents and suicides: firstly, because they correlate with and are verified by the coroners’ data; secondly, because they correlate with real-time reporting by local authority Public Health teams, and thirdly, because Grant Thornton have found strong governance around the recording and reporting of all patient safety incident deaths and suicides.
“We have a duty of care to our public and service users and so it is important for us today to dispel misunderstandings and assumptions that ‘all deaths of those known to NSFT’ equate to deaths related to poor care. Of the 11,379 deaths over the past five years, we know that 271 are related to patient safety incidents including suicides which resulted in further investigation. However, it should be noted that following investigation not all of these necessarily equate to poor care.
“Going forward, we commit to providing a consistent set of information for NSFT’s board and the public, available via our public board papers, with quarterly figures that will be comparable over time.”