Charity launches coronavirus-specific chatbot to help guide patients in keeping safe


  • 27th May 2020

(London, UK, 27 May 2020) – Patient Safety Learning, a charity and independent voice for improving patient safety, has launched a chatbot to answer specific questions the public has related to how they access health and social care during the coronavirus pandemic.

Oscar, the friendly health chatbot, is available on the charity’s shared learning platform, the hub, and seeks to guide the public through an increasingly complex health and social care system.

We’re living in an unprecedented time and facing new challenges. We’re asking questions we’ve never had to ask before – questions that differ according to our circumstances, concerns and needs. Many of these questions relate to how services are responding to the pandemic and the changes in accessing these services.

Helen Hughes, Chief Executive of Patient Safety Learning, says: “Patients, carers and families are concerned about how to access safe care. We believe that access to evidenced-based information and advice is essential to ensure safety for both patients and staff. Oscar is not a diagnostic or treatment tool and we do not offer medical advice. We seek to connect patients, carers and families to the best guidance currently available, related to their specific situation.”

Whether a well adult seeking general information on how to stay safe from coronavirus, a concerned woman about to give birth and wanting to know her options, or a carer looking for advice, Oscar helps people find the answers they need. In time, as Patient Safety Learning sees how the public uses Oscar and receives their feedback, it aims to build on the range of information Oscar currently offers. For example, Oscar currently provides Covid-19 guidance that is specific to England, but this may change and expand in the future.

Like everything else on the hub, Oscar is free to use. Visit the hub now to see how Oscar can help you find the answers you need. And if you’ve questions that you can’t find the answers to, please let Patient Safety Learning know by emailing [email protected], so that the charity can continue developing Oscar to give answers and advice so that we’re all safe.

Notes to editors:

Patient Safety Learning

Patient Safety Learning is a charity that helps transform safety in health and social care, creating a world where patients are free from harm. We identify the critical factors that affect patient safety and analyse the systemic reasons they fail. We use what we learn to envision safer care. We recommend how to get there, then we act to help make it happen.

For more information:

the hub

the hub is Patient Safety Learning’s shared learning platform for patient safety, launched at our annual conference on 2 October 2019. We developed the hub after we identified ‘shared learning’ as one of the six evidence-based foundations of safer care. You can read more about our six foundations in our report, A Blueprint for Action.

To visit the hub:


Helen Hughes, Chief Executive Officer, Patient Safety Learning
T: +44 (0) 7793 550855
E: [email protected]


Margot Knight, Communication and Marketing Manager, Patient Safety Learning
E: [email protected]

Oscar for website image


A platform for anyone with an interest in patient safety to share and learn from one another. Learn more.

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