Openness and honesty should be at the heart of every relationship between those providing treatment and care and those experiencing it.
The Duty of Candour is a legal requirement for NHS Organisations in Wales to be open and honest with service users receiving care and treatment. This is outlined in the Health and Social Care (Quality and Engagement) (Wales) Act 2020.
The Duty of Candour applies if the care we provide has, or may have contributed to unexpected or unintended moderate or severe harm, or death.
In the NHS, we strive to provide high quality, safe and compassionate care to all of our service users. However, even when we do our best, people may sometimes experience harm. That’s why we have the Duty of Candour.
Our goal is to create a culture of trust and openness, so that you can feel confident in the care you receive from us.
Moderate Harm: A service user experiences a moderate increase in treatment and significant but not permanent harm, and the care provided by the NHS did or may have contributed. For example, they are given medication despite this being documented in their notes as an allergy, and this leads to a significant reaction requiring four or more days in hospital before recovery.
Severe Harm: A service user experiences a permanent disability or loss of function and the NHS care did or may have contributed. For example, they are given medication despite this being documented in their notes as an allergy, and this leads to brain damage or other permanent organ damage.
Death: A service user dies and the NHS care did or may have contributed to the death. For example, they are given medication despite this being documented in their notes as an allergy, and this leads to their death.
Here is a summary of the Duty of Candour Procedure that the NHS will follow:
· On first becoming aware that the duty of candour applies, the NHS must notify the service user or a person acting on their behalf. This contact should be ‘in person’, which means by telephone, video call or face to face.
Making a meaningful apology is an important part of the Duty of Candour procedure. An apology is an expression of sorrow or regret for the harm experienced. However, an apology is not an acceptance of blame or legal liability.
If you have any questions, need further information, or would like guidance, please visit our website or contact the organisation where you had your care.
Follow this link for more information including contact details for NHS organisations in Wales.
Rydym yn croesawu gohebiaeth a galwadau ffôn yn y Gymraeg neu'r Saesneg. Atebir gohebiaeth Gymraeg yn y Gymraeg, ac ni fydd hyn yn arwain at oedi. Mae’r dudalen hon ar gael yn Gymraeg drwy bwyso’r botwm ar y dde ar frig y dudalen.
We welcome correspondence and telephone calls in Welsh or English. Welsh language correspondence will be replied to in Welsh, and this will not lead to a delay. This page is available in Welsh by clicking ‘Cymraeg’ at the top right of this page.