NICVA Hosts Information Event on DoH Duty of Candour Consultation

21 May 2021 Kathy Maguire    Last updated: 5 Aug 2021

Duty of Candour consultation

NICVA's recently hosted an engagement event with the Department of Health in relation to the departments current public consultation on policy proposals to implement a Duty of Candour for Health and Social Care (HSC).

The Department of Health is consulting on draft policy proposals for the statutory Duty of Candour and a Being Open Framework for Health and Social Care (HSC). These policy proposals, to enact a statutory Duty of Candour in Northern Ireland, were developed by the Duty of Candour Workstream and its Being Open Subgroup as part of the Hyponatraemia Implementation Programme. The policy proposals set out an approach to implement the recommendations relating to a statutory Duty of Candour made by the Inquiry Into Hyponatraemia-Related Deaths 

The aim of this engagement event was to further inform VCS organisations about these policy proposals and how they can best respond to the public consultation.

Joining us at this event where Alan Weir from the Dept of Health and Quintin Oliver, Chair of The Duty of Candour Workstream, who have been responsible for developing the proposal options to address the recommendations on candour. 

In his presentation Quintin explained the background to the IHRD programme, the public consultation and policy proposals and shared some information and advice to help support organisations to respond to the consultation. A copy of his full presentation is included in this article.

You can view a recording of the session below:


Responding to the Consultation

In order to help people to respond to the consultation, Plain English and Easy Read versions of the policy proposals are available on the DoH website.  Please note that respondents do not have to address every question within the consultation, and can instead focus on the questions or issues that are of particular interest.

Responses can be submitted using one of the following options:

  • Via the online survey hosted on Citizen Space;
  • By completing the consultation questionnaire available on the DoH website.  The Questionnaire can be adapted and completed depending on which questions you wish to respond to, and submitted via email or in hard copy using the contact details listed below;
  • By completing the Consultation Response template and submitting it using the contact details listed below; and
  • By sending an email, or writing to the address listed below, with a summary of your feedback to the consultation.

Email -

[email protected]

Write to -

IHRD Implementation
Department of Health
Room D1.1, Castle Buildings
Stormont Estate,

Further  Information on the Duty of Candour and a Being Open Framework

The statutory Duty of Candour and a Being Open Framework for Health and Social Care (HSC) have been developed following the recommendations from the Inquiry into Hyponatraemia-Related Deaths and are part of the Department of Health’s Hyponatraemia Implementation Programme.

The Inquiry recommended that a statutory Duty of Candour should apply to Healthcare Organisations and everyone working for them. The Inquiry also recommended that criminal liability should attach to breach of this duty and to obstruction of another in the performance of this duty. Further recommendations were made about the need for guidance, support and protection to be provided for staff and organisations in order to create a more open culture.

More Information on the Public Consultation

The consultation, which commenced on 12 April, was scheduled to close on 2 August 2021, but the deadline for submission of responses has been extended until 31 August. More details on the consultation, including how to respond are available on the DoH website here

Further information in relation to the Duty of Candour Workstream and Being Open Subgroup, as well as the whole Hyponatraemia Implementation Programme, is available here

Further Links:

DoH (NI) Consultation Page:

Consultation Citizen Space page – 

Hyponatraemia Implementation Programme - visit or contact [email protected]'s picture
by Kathy Maguire

Policy Development Officer

[email protected]

Share your COVID-19 support service

Organisations providing support to people and communities can share their service information here

> Share your support

Not a NICVA member yet?

Save time, money and energy. Join NICVA and you’ll be connecting in to a strong network of local organisations focused on voluntary and community activity.

Join Us

NICVA now welcomes all small groups for free.

Read more on...