An independent inquiry into an NHS hospital where patients were “routinely neglected” cost more than £1.7 million to conduct, health officials confirmed.
The Department of Health, responding to a Freedom of Information Act request from the BBC, said the inquiry into the Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust had cost a total of £1,712,000.
The inquiry, which the DoH described as appropriate and proportionate, found that the trust displayed systemic failings in its approach to care between 2005 and 2009.
Figures released by the Government also showed that the inquiry, which published its findings last month, ran up staff costs of £633,000 and legal fees of £613,000.
A further £158,000 was spent on communications and printing, while stationery and office expenses totalled £55,000.
The inquiry, which considered evidence from more than 960 members of the public, found that the Trust lost sight of its responsibility to provide safe care after managers became preoccupied with Government targets.
In a statement, the Department of Health said: “We cannot put a price on patient safety in the NHS.
“The lessons that have been learnt from this report have allowed us to strengthen patient safety across the country, and we will continue to benefit from these lessons for many years to come.
“The importance we attach to the concerns of the families involved is also reflected in the cost, which includes their legal representation.
“It was essential the inquiry was appropriate, proportionate and that lessons would be learnt to prevent such issues happening again.”