Commenting on the NHS Commissioning Board’s plan for increased access to services 7 days a week announcement from the NHS Commissioning Board, Sir Richard Thompson, president of the Royal College of Physicians (RCP), said:
Patients deserve the best care in hospitals in the evenings and at weekends.
For some time the RCP has been concerned that acute hospital care at weekends needs to improve. In 2010 we recommended that any hospital admitting acutely ill patients should have a consultant physician on-site for at least 12 hours per day, 7 days a week, who should have no other duties scheduled during this time.
We believe that to make this aim a reality, some services will need to be redesigned and may have resource implications. The RCP is currently reviewing the standards of care for medical inpatients, including 7 day working, in our Future Hospital Commission, which is due to report in Spring 2013.