The UK's National Health Service is so unsafe that "planes would be falling out of the sky all the time" if it were an airline, a chief investigator has said.
Robert Francis, QC, who is chairman of the inquiry into the Mid-Staffs hospital scandal, said the public has been given a rosy impression about the level of care provided in hospitals that the facts don't support.
In an interview with the Daily Telegraph, Mr Francis blamed the problem on complacency within management teams running the hospital trusts. "If we ran our airline industry on the same basis, planes would be falling out of the sky all the time," he said.
Getting access to records has been difficult, and without knowing the true situation, the public has a rosier picture about the quality of care in our hospitals, he said.
Since the Francis inquiry was instigated last year, 14 NHS hospital trusts have been investigated over high death rates, and health secretary Jeremy Hunt has said it was "utterly shocking" that were 12,500 deaths every year in UK hospitals as the result of a blunder by staff.
(Source: Daily Telegraph, May 27, 2014)