Speaking Up Data 2022/23

Highest numbers of speaking up cases raised with Freedom to Speak Up guardians recorded

Over 25,000 cases were brought to Freedom to Speak Up guardians throughout 2022/23 – a 25% increase on the previous year.

25,382 cases brought to Freedom to Speak Up Guardians in 2022/23

  • Nearly a third of cases included an element of inappropriate behaviours and attitudes. A decrease in the percentage of cases related to bullying or harassment (31.8 percent in 2021/22 to 21.7 percent in 2022/23) can be attributed to cases being reported against this new category.
  • Over a quarter of cases included an element of worker safety or wellbeing.
  • Nineteen per cent of cases involved an element of patient safety/quality this year, up from 18.8% in 2021/22.

Despite an improvement in levels of anonymity, detriment for speaking up remains a concern. Although there has been a drop in percentage (to 3.9%) given the rise in numbers, this equates to 1,000 cases.

2022/23 speaking up data (Excel)

Latest figures

On a quarterly basis, Freedom to Speak Up Guardians are expected to share non-identifiable information with the National Guardian’s Office about the speaking up cases raised with them. This information provides invaluable insight into the implementation of Freedom to Speak Up.

For detailed data reported to the NGO please see below

Q1 - Q3 2023/24 speaking up data (Excel)

Annual Speaking Up Data Reports

These reports reflect trends and themes from the speaking up data in previous years.

  • The number of cases brought to Freedom to Speak Up guardians in 2021/22  remained at the level seen during the first year of the pandemic  at 20,362.
  • Between 1 April 2020 to 31 March 2021, the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, over twenty thousand (20,388) cases were raised with Freedom to Speak Up Guardians. This was a 26-percentage point increase from the previous year.
  • Guardians received over 16,000 speaking up cases in 2019/20 – an increase of 32% compared to the previous year. This is nearly half of the 35,000 cases raised with guardians since we started collecting data in 2017/18.
  • 12,244 cases were raised to Freedom to Speak Up Guardians in trusts and Foundation trusts between 1st April 2018 and 31st March 2019 – 73% higher than that raised the previous year.
  • For the first year in which we collected data – 1 April 2017 to 31 March 2018 – 7,087 cases were raised to Freedom to Speak Up Guardians in NHS trusts and foundation trusts

Annual Speaking Up Data Summary

Speaking Up data - film summary for data collected 1April 2021 - 31 March 2022

The year of the pandemic: A summary of speaking up to Freedom to Speak Up Guardians

Speaking Up Data report for 1 April 2020 and 31 March 2021

Annual Speaking Up Data Report 2019-20

A summary of speaking up to Freedom to Speak Up Guardians

Annual Speaking Up Data Report 2018-19

Speaking up in the NHS in England: A summary of speaking up to Freedom to Speak Up Guardians in NHS trusts and foundation trusts

Annual Speaking Up Data Report 2017-18

Speaking up in the NHS in England A summary of speaking up to Freedom to Speak Up Guardians in NHS trusts and foundation trusts

Why is speaking up data important?

The data Freedom to Speak Up Guardians submit provides invaluable insight into the implementation of the Freedom to Speak Up.

The data also helps provide confidence – and assists in learning and improvement – for the colleagues and organisations they support, and other Freedom to Speak Up Guardians.

NHS England use this data, along with other indicators and intelligence, to inform their thinking around where to offer improvement support in relation to Freedom to Speak Up.

NHS England also upload this information to the Model Health System. Freedom to Speak Up Guardians and leaders can use this service to build a more holistic picture of their organisation’s speaking up culture.

Upcoming dates for data submissions

Q1 (2023/24): Opens Monday 10th July 2023 and closes on Monday 7th August 2023

Q2 (2023/24): Opens Monday 9th October 2023 and closes on Monday 6th November 2023

Q3 (2023/24): Opens Monday 8th January 2024 and closes on Monday 5th February 2024

Q4 (2023/24): Opens Monday 8th April 2024 and closes on Tuesday 7th May 2024

Guardians will be able to add or amend data from 2022/23 during the reconciliation period, which will run alongside the Q4 window.

Portal

Case Study

The use of data played a major role in  Northamptonshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust ’s efforts to improve their speaking up culture as Matt Asbrey, former Freedom to Speak Up Guardian at NHFT explains.

By triangulating the data provided from speaking up cases raised, pulse surveys and the results of the NHS National Staff Survey, Matt was able to better understand the experience of workers and identify areas for learning and improvement.

Read More

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