Abuse victims are still frightened of speaking out against powerful people, Jeremy Hunt has warned after the shocking findings of the Jimmy Savile investigation.
The Health Secretary, said there had been major changes in recent decades but "we haven't come the whole way." A series of chilling reports into the activities of Savile found he had subjected patients in hospitals to "sickening" sexual abuse.
Mr Hunt apologised on behalf of the Government and NHS to Savile's victim when the findings at 28 hospitals were published on Thursday.
He told BBC Radio 4's Today programme:
"I think we are kidding ourselves if we think there aren't people even today who are frightened of speaking out in those situations and whilst, of course we always look at the law, we also have to look at the culture and being better at supporting people who do want to speak out."
The true scale of the Jimmy Savile scandal has been laid bare today as a report revealed how he was allowed to commit a horrifying catalogue of sexual abuse in hospitals up and down the country over 50 years.
At Leeds General Infirmary alone, dozens of people came forward to say he had abused them. His victims were patients, staff, young boys and girls and even pensioners.
In a damning indictment, investigators found his predatory and manipulative behaviour was allowed to thrive in the Leeds hospital because reports of allegations against him there were never passed onto senior staff. Jon Hill reports:
The Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has apologised to the victims of Jimmy Savile today saying "Savile's actions will shake our country to the core."
The scale of the disgraced DJ's catalogue of sexual abuse of the most vulnerable victims aged from just five to 75 has become clear. A report has been published detailing investigations at 28 hospitals including allegations of historic abuse at De la Pole hospital in Hull.
Today in the Commons one of the city's MPs, Diana Johnson, said the revelations raised concerns over plans to scale back background checks for volunteers in hospitals:
A transgender man abused by Jimmy Savile has told ITV News he still has nightmares about his ordeal.
The Health Secretary today apologised to victims after further details of Savile's crimes at NHS hospitals across the country were released.
"I still have nightmares. A lot of people would think 'there's nothing wrong with him' but that's not true - I still have nightmare. I still dream I'm locked up," Steven George said.
A nurse at Whitby Hospital claims Jimmy Savile inappropriately touched her during a visit in the 1960s. The claim has been investigated by York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, one of 28 Trusts publishing the findings of Savile investigations.
The investigation began after a former member of staff at the Whitby Memorial Hospital, which was demolished in the 1970s, made a complaint. Savile is alleged to have 'put his arms around her and touched her inappropriately', though not in a sexual way, and made an inappropriate comment.
She claimed Savile visited the hospital occasionally, sometimes alone and sometimes with a driver and was very 'touchy feely' and used to 'paw you'. She didn't make a complaint at the time but said she told him not to behave inappropriately.
– Mike Proctor, Deputy Chief Executive, York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
It is important the NHS plays its part in investigating allegations relating to Jimmy Savile and we took our duty to do this seriously. Our investigation centred on a single allegation at Whitby Hospital, which was an isolated incident that does not appear to have caused long term harm to the individual concerned. Our investigation also highlighted that, 50 years ago, society was very different and we now have much greater awareness of the dangers to vulnerable people, with systems and processes in place to better protect them."
- Read more on the Savile investigations here.
Jimmy Savile was a "callous, opportunistic, wicked predator" who abused people who had a right to be safe, Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt said.
Victims were let down as "people and institutions turned a blind eye" to Savile's crimes, Hunt said.
Hunt said the whole country will share a "deep sense of revulsion" at the details of Savile's crimes.
"He was a sickening and prolific sexual abuser who repeatedly exploited the trust of a nation for his own vile purposes," Hunt told MPs as he apologised on behalf of the government and NHS.
Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has apologised on behalf of the government and NHS for letting down the victims of Jimmy Savile, after a series of investigations found Savile had subjected patients in hospitals to "sickening" sexual abuse.
"Today I want to apologise on behalf of the Government and the NHS to all the victims who were abused by Savile in NHS-run institutions," Mr Hunt told MPs.
"We let them down badly and however long ago it may have been, many of them are still reliving the pain they went through.
"If we cannot undo the past, I hope that honesty and transparency about what happened can at least alleviate some of the suffering, it's the least we owe them."
A woman who was sexually assaulted in a hospital basement by Jimmy Savile when she was a teenage patient said she feels "betrayed" by Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust.
The now 57-year-old was abused by the disgraced entertainer in Leeds General Infirmary in 1973, when he was volunteering as a porter at the hospital.
She said wants an apology from the trust and reassurances such abuse can never happen again.
The woman, who was an in-patient at the time, said that she had attempted to report the abuse to nurses, but they laughed off her complaints.
"In my opinion, the hospital let me down," she told the Press Association. "They let me down by allowing that to happen, but they also let me down two years ago when they didn't acknowledge it had happened."
"The fact that they just didn't even reply to my emails until I really bombarded them, and then they did. That's like I was betrayed twice, let down twice, the fact they didn't believe me."