Today we publish the latest Freedom to Speak Up (FTSU) Index.

The FTSU Index can help build a picture of what the speaking up culture feels like for workers. It is a metric for NHS Trusts, drawn from four questions in the NHS Annual Staff Survey, asking whether staff feel knowledgeable, encouraged and supported to raise concerns and if they agree they would be treated fairly if involved in an error, near miss or incident.

Since the introduction of Freedom to Speak Up Guardians in 2015, the FTSU Index has improved and risen 3.7 percentage points nationally from 75.5% in 2015 to 79.2%.

While we continue to see an upward trajectory, there is a continued disparity between the highest performing organisations and the lowest, with a 21 percentage point difference between the highest and lowest. More concerning is that this disparity has increased this year.

This year a new question was included in the NHS Staff Survey asking if workers feel safe to speak up about anything that concerns them in their organisation.

The answers to this question show a very strong positive correlation with the FTSU Index, with 66% of staff “agreeing” or “strongly agreeing” that they feel safe to speak up about anything that concerns them in their organisation.  We will be looking in more depth into the details of the responses to this question in a future report.

Read the report

Read the press release