NewsMartha’s Rule to roll out across NHS hospitals

Martha’s Rule to roll out across NHS hospitals

NHS England will roll out ‘Martha’s Rule’ across 143 hospitals in its first year.

Martha’s Rule is a safety initiative that provides a way for patients and families to receive an urgent review of their or their loved one’s condition if they deteriorate. The initiative is named after Martha Mills who sadly passed away in hospital from sepsis in 2021, aged 13, when her family’s concerns about her condition were ignored.

‘We are pleased that the roll-out of Martha’s Rule is off to a flying start,’ said Martha’s parents Merope Mills and Paul Laity. ‘It will save lives and encourage better, more open communication on hospital wards so that patients feel they are listened to.’

By March 2025, NHS England expect the programme to be in place at 143 locations. It will include a 24/7 escalation process for patients, families and NHS staff to contact a critical care outreach team. Clinicians will also formally record information about any worrying changes in behaviour or condition directly from families to ensure their concerns are considered by staff.

Senior responsible officer for Martha’s Rule, Dr Aidan Fowler said: ‘I am in no doubt this programme will deliver clear change and it has been so encouraging to see how many hospitals have shown interest in being part of delivering these all-important patient safety measures this year’.

NHS England is working with Martha’s parents to develop materials to advertise and explain the initiative in hospitals across the country, to ensure it is something that all patients, staff, and their families can recognise.

In April this year, the Nursing and Midwifery Council, General Medical Council and Care Quality Commission, issued a joint statement supporting the implementation of Martha’s Rule by NHS England.

Image | Unsplash


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