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An innovative, trusted platform

A national platform

Patient Opinion has national scale and national visibility. It is currently used to some degree by 90% of NHS Trusts in England, all health boards in Scotland, about 40 CCGs, 40 healthwatches, and over 3,000 professionals in training.

Small local platforms generally have only limited local visibility. By contrast, stories on Patient Opinion have been viewed over 72 million times. Because PO is very active on social media, feedback about services achieves a national audience.

In addition, our national scale means that PO is taken seriously by national bodies such as CQC, NHS England, and patient and professional organisations. CQC is exploring how provider engagement and responsiveness on Patient Opinion might be used as an indicator of a transparent and learning organisation.

A trusted platform

To create change in health and social care, it is important to be known and trusted by patients and staff alike. Patient Opinion’s track record, profile and value-driven approach have earned the trust of thousands of patients and staff over the last decade.

A service which is known and trusted by patients but not staff, or vice versa, will struggle to create the culture change which is needed.

At the heart of Patient Opinion’s purpose, reflected in its platform, is to see story authors as people, not as data. Our system keeps the story author in the loop and shows them and others the impact they had. No other patient feedback platform does this.

A mature and tested platform

Patient Opinion’s system has 10 years of learning and development behind it. It offers a wide range of features not found in any other feedback system, including:

  • Ability to post about multiple providers across a care pathway
  • Ability for providers, commissioner, healthwatch and author to respond
  • Ability to demonstrate clearly change
  • Ability to learn which responses are helpful
  • Flexible and easy to use searching
  • Powerful alerting options
  • Flexible reporting
  • Integrated blogging
  • Widgets on other sites

An accessible platform

Patient Opinion’s system is accessible to a wide range of users on a range of devices, including mobile, tablet and desktop.

Our site is accessible to screen readers, is resizable, offers different contrast themes for users with visual impairments, and includes videos for users who prefer British Sign Language.

A continuously innovating platform

Patient Opinion has the expertise, scale and long-term commitment to continuously innovate its service for the benefit of patients and staff alike.

For example, in recent months we have added significant new features for subscribers including:

  • Notifications page for transparency
  • New smart alerts and responder alerts
  • Improved NHS Choices integration
  • Word clouds
  • Images in responses

And we are working on some exciting new features including:

  • Interactive online site tours for new staff
  • Further search, alert and report options
  • Blog widget
  • Subscriber tagging for internal feedback management
  • New options for following stories, services and tags
  • “Nudge” feature to help drive change

In addition, in 2016 we expect to launch a major project which will enable people with dementia or other cognitive impairments to offer feedback via Patient Opinion. This highly innovative project will have a national profile.

A responsive, dedicated service to subscribers

Patient Opinion is dedicated to the single task of safe, simple and effective online feedback which leads to demonstrable learning and change.

In support of this we offer a range of additional services to our subscribers including:

  • Enabling feedback by phone or post as well as online
  • Fast, responsive support to staff
  • Online programmes of training and sharing best practice
  • Support on specific projects or innovations

These additional services are not offered by organisations with multiple other priorities and interests.

Accountable, transparent and value-driven

Patient Opinion is an accountable and transparent service. We take our legal and ethical obligations seriously, and take an active role in national debate and policy around online feedback.

We have clear public policies and mature processes on important feedback-related issues such as:

  • Moderation policy
  • Safeguarding
  • Privacy
  • Data protection and online security
  • Defamation and protection of staff
  • Legal liability and insurance
  • Service reliability and global 24/7 uptime
  • Business continuity
  • Equal opportunities

We are driven by our clear values of transparency, learning and improvement in health services, and we speak and write about this often, at national conferences, events and in publications such as the Guardian, the BMJ and the Health Service Journal.