Information for patients and families

Our aim is to involve patients and families affected by safety incidents in our investigations. Patients and families are supported to be involved throughout the investigation process.

Key to this is listening and understanding your healthcare experience and safety concerns. The response to a patient safety concern or incident is an opportunity to learn, reduce risk and improve systems across healthcare. Involving the people who have been affected by safety issues in a consistent and effective way is fundamental to bring about patient safety improvements.

Our investigations do not replace any existing investigations or other processes that individual patients or families may use to help them address a patient safety concern. HSSIB investigations look at how patient safety incidents may occur across the wider healthcare system. Find out more about what we can investigate.

How we involve you

Patient and family involvement in our safety investigations covers the whole investigation process from start to finish. 

It can include:

  • Listening to concerns shared with us by patients when we select areas for investigation, to help us focus on the most serious issues.
  • Working with patients and families, or representative groups, during our investigations to understand your experiences of care.
  • Sharing our investigation reports for comment and feedback before we publish a final report, to help us check and challenge our findings, safety recommendations and other safety learning.

This involves effective liaison between a patient or family, or representative charities and patient groups, and the HSSIB investigating team. We can choose to speak with patients and families on an individual basis or speak to wider groups to understand your experiences, for example via focus groups or surveys.

Your involvement can vary depending on specific investigations, but we always make sure we ask you how you want to work with us. Wherever we can, we tailor our approach to meet your specific needs.