Seven hospitals have been directed to publish information on the quality of their private healthcare services after failing to meet the deadline.
The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has issued directions to 7 hospitals, demanding that they start providing this information by the end of October 2017.
Following its investigation into the private healthcare sector, all hospitals treating private patients were required by the CMA to publish information about the quality of the service they provide. This includes patient feedback on treatment, the performance of healthcare professionals and information on infection rates, mortality rates and readmissions to hospital.
Hospitals were required to submit this information to the Private Healthcare Information Network (PHIN) quarterly from September 2016, for publication from April 2017. The CMA is now starting formal action against 7 hospitals that have failed to make sufficient progress in meeting this requirement. These are Kettering General Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust, Western Health and Social Care Trust, Northern Health and Social Care Trust, Taunton and Somerset NHS Foundation Trust, Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust, and Sandwell and Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust.
Senior Director of Remedies at CMA, Adam Land said, “It is essential that patients are given the necessary information on issues like quality of care so they can choose the right hospital for their needs.
“Although progress is being made, certain hospitals have failed to submit any information to PHIN for publication. The CMA is now starting formal proceedings against those hospitals which have made least progress towards compliance. We will take further action against any hospital that is not fully compliant.”
Andrew Vallance-Owen, Chairman of the Private Healthcare Information Network said, “Lessons from the last year have shown an absolute and urgent need for greater transparency in private healthcare in the UK. PHIN wholeheartedly supports the action taken by the CMA.
“It’s time for private healthcare to do what other industry sectors have been doing for years which is to quantifiably measure success, identify and improve poor care, and allow good care to stand out. Ultimately this is about empowering patients with information that will help them understand and choose the best care for them or their families.”
The CMA will continue to ensure all private healthcare providers comply with this order to give patients accurate and complete quality information so they can choose the right hospital for them.