Hospitals have been dubbed “dangerous places” that fail to comply with health and safety laws.
This damning criticism comes in a report published last month by the Committee of Public Accounts.
The report provoked reaction from MPs who were disturbed that the NHS Executive was “unaware of this state of affairs”.
The Committee said: “We consider it highly unsatisfactory that the health sector reports to the Health and Safety Executive only 37% of the accidents which it is legally required to report.”
The MPs added: “We are concerned that hospitals are such dangerous places for patients, staff, and visitors.” The head of the National Audit Office had estimated that, allowing for under-recording, there may have been more than one million accidents in NHS acute hospital trusts in England in 1995. He said costs were likely to have been at least £154m a year.
The Committee said trusts should draw up detailed action plans for full complieance with health and safety legislation.