AvMA has consistently called for a statutory duty of candour in all parts of the UK. Our case was helped significantly by events at the Royal Victoria Hospital, Belfast and the subsequent exposure of cover ups of serious failings affecting patients in 2014 strengthened AvMA’s arm.
At a meeting with AvMA chief executive Peter Walsh, previous Health Minister Edwin Poots said that he was minded to bring in a statutory duty. Following a review of patient safety in Northern Ireland by Sir Liam Donaldson, Health Minister Jim Wells confirmed that this would happen.
Ministers have confirmed an intention to bring in a statutory duty of candour. A extensive consultation was completed in 2021. The Northern Ireland Assembly expected to finalise proposals and bring forward the necessary legislation when it resumes.