Francis Inquiry

man in a wheelchair

The Francis report provided a detailed analysis of what contributed to serious failures in care at Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust. 

Led by Robert Francis QC, the landmark report identified how the regulatory and oversight system failed to detect and address the trust's problems. It concluded that what happened was the result of a system failure, as well as a failure of the organisation, and called for a fundamental change in culture across the NHS.

Published in February 2013, its findings and recommendations have shaped health and care policy and renewed the health service's focus on delivering the highest possible care for patients.

Changing culture

The Government's response, issued in November 2013, accepted most of Robert Francis' 290 recommendations and outlined a number of measures to ensure patient safety and high-quality care. The Government announced:

  • regular publication of patient safety data
  • a statutory duty of candour on organisations and professional duty on individuals
  • greater senior involvement in complaints handling
  • guidance and tools for setting staffing levels and regular publication of actual levels
  • fit and proper persons test for board members and greater performance management of very senior managers
  • a new offence of wilful neglect, applicable to individuals and to organisations
  • a 'Clinical Bureaucracy Index' for trusts and Concordat between national bodies to reduce bureaucracy.

The Government and regulators are responding to the quality challenge raised in the report through a series of new legal measures.

medical staff reviewing notes

New quality regulations

The Government and regulators are introducing a range of legal measures to ensure patient safety and high-quality care for patients across the country,

lever arch folder

Independent reviews

In the wake of the Francis report, the Government commissioned six independent reviews to consider several of the key issues identified by the inquiry.


Background to the inquiry

Our interactive guide provides a detailed overview of what led to Robert Francis QC's inquiry.

NHS logo

Hard truths: one year on

Find out how the NHS Confederation and NHS Employers organisation have been supporting members to implement the changes ushered in by the Francis report and 'Hard truths'.

Related News

MPs hear NHS view on impact of TTIP

NHS European Office

NHS European Office appears before BIS Select Committee to speak on the potential impact of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership agreement.

View article

A&E performance indicative of intense pressure across system

Latest figures showing that A&E departments in England missed the four-hour waiting time target between October to December 2014 are indicative of intense pressures across the whole health and care system, the head of the NHS Confederation said on 6 January.

View article




2015 challenge report

2015 challenge declaration

6 / 5 / 2014 09:00 AM

Why Register?

Great reasons to register with NHS Confederation

  • Personalise your website
    Select topics of interest for recommended content
  • Bookmark useful pages
    Quickly and easily find what you need
  • Comment and recommend
    Rate and share content with colleagues
  • Plus, for our members
    Access member-only resources and tailor member benefits and services

Sounds great, what next?

Register Now

Not now, I will register later

Log In

To book events and access member only content you need to register with us.  This only takes a moment via our registration page. If you have already registered login using your email address and password below.