Health secretary Andrew Lansley is proposing new changes to the NHS in order to ensure that staff are encouraged to come forward with concerns about safety or malpractice issues.
A consultation has been launched into planned amendments to the NHS Constitution and Handbook, which will reinforce the rights of whistleblowers to report wrongdoings without any fear of reprisal.
Further changes will call on employers to support staff that raise such concerns, as well as introducing an obligation for healthcare workers to report problems as soon as they arise.
Mr Lansley said these measures will help to avoid a repeat of failings recently noted at the Mid-Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust, which is currently the subject of an investigation.
He added: "Staff should be working in an environment where they feel able to voice concerns and know that their concerns will be taken seriously."
Earlier this week, the Department of Health announced that it will be looking to introduce summary care records for patients needing emergency care as part of its ongoing drive to improve outcomes.See all the latest jobs in Medical Devices