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January 19, 2006

UK NHS website allows patients to post opinions

UK National Health Service (NHS) patients are being given a new opportunity to express their opinions and share their experiences of the NHS with the launch of a new website called Patient Opinion, according to an article published by public sector research firm Kable.

By CBR Staff Writer

Users submit their opinions via a weblog on the site with an in-built tagging system translating simple descriptions into medical terminology.

Already in use by a number of trusts, it is envisioned that the information it provides will eventually be used by all NHS trusts to monitor and compare performance, with the advantage of using patient feedback rather than official reports. Furthermore, feedback supplied by patients on the site will be used as the basis of reports.

Although the not-for-profit site received start-up funding from the Department of Health back in April 2005, and has since been piloted in several trusts, the service has only recently started to take off. Hospitals are now using flyers and pamphlets to advertise the site and encourage patients to post their views online.

The article said Headshift was providing the software system, which apparently uses a friendly interface while accurately capturing information.

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