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RCOG statement on Future Hospital Commission report

News 12 September 2013

The Future Hospital Commission, established by the Royal College of Physicians in March 2012, have published the report Future hospital: caring for medical patients.

The report sets out the Commission’s vision for hospital services structured around the needs of patients, now and in the future. It focuses on the care of acutely ill medical patients, the organisation of medical services, and the role of physicians and doctors in training across the medical specialties in England and Wales.

The Commission’s recommendations are centred on the need to design hospital services that deliver:

  • safe, effective and compassionate medical care for all who need it as hospital inpatients
  • high-quality care sustainable 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
  • continuity of care as the norm
  • stable medical teams that deliver both high-quality patient care and an effective environment in which to educate and train the next generation of doctors
  • effective relationships between medical and other health and social care teams
  • a balance of specialist care and care coordinated expertly and holistically around patients’ needs
  • transfer of care arrangements that realistically allocate responsibility for further action when patients move from one care setting to another

Dr Tony Falconer, President of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, said:

“The RCOG welcomes this new report placing the needs of patients at the centre of care. Our response to the Francis Inquiry emphasised the need to put the patient first, as well as focus on patient safety, create outstanding leadership and work together as teams of professionals. We also believe that all obstetricians and gynaecologists must ensure that they interact with their patients with compassion, dignity and respect.

“We also agree that patients need high quality care around the clock and 7 days a week and are currently looking at ways to have more senior presence in the labour ward during the out-of-hours period so that we maintain safe, high quality O&G services.

“Reconfiguration of services will be necessary to achieve these goals, particularly in maternity services, where it will be appropriate to structure services in order to provide a range of birth settings dependant on safety, the medical needs and the choice of women.

“We support the recommendations made in this report and many of the messages are echoed in our Working Party reports, Tomorrow’s Specialist and High Quality Women’s Health Care.”


For further information, please contact the RCOG Media and PR team on +44 20 7772 6300 or email