Age UK Response to Francis Report
Published on 06 February 2013 02:30 PM
Michelle Mitchell, Charity Director General at Age UK, said:
"What happened at Mid Staffordshire hospital must not be seen in isolation. Older patients in hospitals across the country all too frequently continue to face appalling breaches of humane and dignified care. To stop this kind of shocking treatment once and for all requires a change in culture and practice from top to bottom. The Prime Minister now needs to clearly set out how he will take forward recommendations of the Francis report and their proposals for turning words into action that deliver deep and lasting change.
"This will mean recognising the realities of the modern NHS. At any one time about 65 per cent of patients in hospital will be over the age of 65. Many of them will be frail, suffering from dementia and have complicated conditions. We need to ensure our hospitals are equipped to care for older people with skill and compassion.
"We need to ensure all staff are well trained in caring for frail older people and empowered to deliver excellent care supported by senior managers. It also means listening to and working with patients and their families to make sure care is right.
"If we are to stand a chance of preventing another tragedy on the scale of Mid Staffs, we must make sure dignified care is always a top priority for the NHS at every level. However if we can get it right for some of the frailest and most vulnerable patients then we'll know we have an NHS fit for everyone."
Notes to editors
For media enquiries relating to Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland please contact the appropriate national office: Age Scotland on 0131 668 8055, Age Cymru on 029 2043 1562 and Age NI on 028 9024 5729.
Age UK is the new force combining Age Concern and Help the Aged, dedicated to improving later life.
We provide free information, advice and support to over six million people; commercial products and services to well over one million customers; and research and campaign on the issues that matter to people in later life. Our work focuses on five key areas: money matters, health and well being, home and care, work and training and leisure and lifestyle. We work with our national partners, Age Scotland, Age Cymru and Age NI (together the Age UK Family), our local Age UK partners in England and local Age Concerns. We also work internationally for people in later life as a member of the DEC and with our sister charity Help Age International.
Age UK is a charitable company limited by guarantee and registered in England (registered charity number 1128267 and company number 6825798). Age Concern England and Help the Aged (both registered charities), and their trading and other associated companies merged on the 1st April 2009. Together they have formed the Age UK Group ("we"). Charitable services are offered through Age UK and commercial products are offered by the Charity's trading companies, which donate their net profits to Age UK (the Charity).