The Care Quality Commission (CQC) recently published its annual report on enforcing the Ionising Radiation (Medical Exposure) Regulations in England. These regulations aim to protect individuals from accidental or unintentional exposure to ionising radiation in healthcare settings. Healthcare providers are required to notify the CQC of any errors related to the use of ionising radiation for diagnosis or treatment.
The report provides a breakdown of the number and types of errors reported to the CQC between 1 April 2022 and 31 March 2023. It also highlights the key findings from the CQC’s inspection and enforcement activities during that period.
In total the CQC received 727 notifications of errors during the 2022/23 period. The majority of these errors (52%) were reported by diagnostic imaging departments, followed by nuclear medicine departments (11%) and radiotherapy departments (37%). Despite the notifications of errors, it is important to note that they represent a small proportion of the total number of examinations and treatments conducted. Most of these errors did not result in harm to patients.
The most common cause of error was the request of images for the wrong patient. Inadequate checks regarding patient identity and mistakes made by operators also contributed. As part of their inspection, the CQC recommended improvements and took enforcement action in cases of non-compliance with the regulations. Areas for improvement included the development of comprehensive procedures and guidance reflecting effective clinical practice, more frequent equipment testing and maintaining accurate records for practitioners.
To read the full report, you can visit the CQC press release here.
In some recent articles, our medical negligence team have highlighted other ongoing issues within the NHS. Click each link below to read more:
- Lowest Ever Level of Public Satisfaction With The NHS
- NHS Cancer Waiting Times Targets Missed
- A&E Waiting Times in the UK – Do you have a claim?
Medical Negligence Claims
Although it has been detailed that most of the errors in this report have not resulted in direct harm, any delay in treatment or misdiagnosis due to incorrect imaging can have severe consequences for a patient. If you or a loved one have been affected, our experienced medical negligence solicitors can help.
With offices across East Yorkshire and Lincolnshire, including Hull, Market Rasen, Lincoln, Louth, Scarborough and Grimsby, Bridge McFarland has supported clients in these areas and across the UK for many years.