Call 4 Concern

Call 4 Concern allows inpatients or their loved ones to directly report a decline in their condition that has been reported but not addressed by healthcare staff on the ward.

This service is also referred to nationally as ‘Martha’s Rule’.

If you have noticed a decline in your or your loved one’s condition, you should always report this immediately to the healthcare staff on the ward as the first step.

If after speaking to healthcare staff, you feel that your concerns have not been properly addressed, you can contact the Call 4 Concern Team, which a patient safety initiative run by our Critical Care Outreach Team.

Step 1

Discuss your concerns about your or your loved one’s condition with the patient’s ward nurse or doctor.

Step 2

After speaking to the ward nurse or doctor;

  • Have no changes been made?

  • Are your concerns are not being appropriately acknowledged or acted upon?

  • Are you still worried or concerned that yourself or your loved one is in immediate danger?

You should contact the Call 4 Concern (C4C) service if you have ongoing concerns

Step 3

You can ask the ward staff to contact the Call 4 Concern team, or you can call the relevant hospital number:

Kent and Canterbury Hospital: 07934 603208 (8am-6pm daily)

William Harvey Hospital, Ashford: 07955 320952 (24hr service)

QEQM Hospital, Margate: 07934 603207 (24hr service)

When you contact C4C, they will need to know:

  • the patient’s name

  • the ward they are on

  • a brief description of the problem, and what has already been done about it

  • your contact details and relationship to the patient.

When you call

We aim to answer calls as quickly as possible. However, sometimes we may be dealing with an emergency that may delay our response.

You can leave a message, giving the required information (as above). We will aim to get back to you as soon as possible. If this happens, we advise you to speak to the ward team again.

Call 4 Concern FAQs

What is Call 4 Concern© (C4C)?

Call 4 Concern is a patient safety initiative run by our Critical Care Outreach Team (CCOT). It enables inpatients and families to call for help and advice when they feel concerned that the healthcare team has not recognised their own or their loved one’s changing condition.

C4C is a nurse-led service to help support ward teams in the care of acutely ill inpatients.

When can I call C4C?

Please call C4C if you notice a change or deterioration in your condition or that of the patient you are supporting, and feel your concerns are not being appropriately acknowledged or acted upon.

When should I not contact C4C?

C4C is a patient safety initiative. Please do not call us to report problems with hospital beds, rooms, food, parking, or any other general issues. If you have these problems, please speak to the ward nurse or manager, or contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) via our website:

Will making a C4C call affect how I or my loved one is cared for while in hospital?

No. Please do not feel concerned that using C4C will have a negative effect on you or your loved one’s care in any way. We know that sometimes you or a close loved one will be the first to notice that something is wrong. No one knows your healthcare needs better than you and your family.

What will C4C do when I call?

The Team will discuss your concerns and assess the situation. They will contact the medical team and other healthcare professionals as needed, to discuss treatment options. If they cannot resolve the problem by phone, they will make every effort to discuss your concerns in person.