Harm Free Care

What is Harm Free Care?

Listening to patients, carers and staff and learning from what they say when things go wrong and take action to improve patients’ safety

Sign up to Safety* was a national patient safety campaign launched in June 2014 with the mission to strengthen patient safety in the NHS and make it the safest healthcare system in the world. The ambition is to halve avoidable harm in the NHS by March 2017. NELFT signed up to the campaign in November 2014 and committed to strengthen patient safety by signing up to the five pledges; Put patients first, continually learn, honesty, collaborative, support (see below for further information).

Significant progress has been seen in the reduction of pressure ulcers with the target being met and exceeded on some occasions. Low incidents remain in a number of work streams and improvement work continues. Violence and Aggression, restraint and self- harm remain unstable and further work will be targeted to reduce harm.

The campaign has come to an end in March however it is recognised that work needs to continue to ensure we continue to make improvements and reduce harm. All the work streams will continue with the strategic group being renamed as ‘Harm Free Care’.

*Sign up to Safety comes to an end and Harm free care continues to progress the initiative. 

NELFT has signed up to the campaign and commits to strengthen patient safety by signing up to the following five pledges (these pledges will be taken forward via the newly form Harm Free Care Strategy group):

1   Put patients first

  • Continuing to progress the national harm-free care and zero tolerance campaign in relation to pressure ulcers
  • Reducing moderate/severe medication errors
  • Improving physical health care in mental health services
  • Improving diagnosis of bone fractures.

2   Continually learn

  • Improve services by listening to our patients
  • Reduce risk by learning from serious incidents.

3    Honesty

  • Promote and build on a culture of being open and honest.

4   Collaborative

  • Continue to be an active member of the University College London Partnership
  • Continue to share good practice with partners.

5   Support

  • Embed supervision to support staff
  • Develop annual staff awards to include specific patient safety award.

NELFT sat down with Daniel Kite, a service user with our Havering Tissue Viability team, to talk about the impact that pressure ulceration has had on his life and the simple steps we can all take to prevent these life-changing injuries. You can view this here


Lead director for Sign up to Safety campaign: Diane Searle, director of nursing, patient safety; diane.searle@nelft.nhs.uk