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Update 2017
Coverup, protection
Original articles
Name and shame

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NHS scandle - I thought they were talking about road safety!

To anyone who has been independently investigating road safety for the last 10 years or so, this will seem remarkably familiar. You could easily interchange “NHS” with “DfT”,  “Hospital” with “Council” or “Road Safety Partnership”, “patients” with “road users”  and you would hardly notice the difference:


“Empire with no shame”

“cover-up proves secrecy infects the entire NHS bureaucracy”

“patients have been put at sometimes fatal risk by incompetence”

“instead of addressing these problems, the bureaucracy of the NHS tries to cover them up. A culture of deception and bullying has been allowed to spread across officialdom in the drive to hide the truth from the public, backed up by gagging orders, threats of legal actions, misleading reports and harassment of whistleblowers.”

“Instead of exposing failure, it had shamefully colluded with it. Yet despite all the evidence of institutional breakdown, not a single official from either the Healthcare Commission or the Care Quality Commission was sacked, nor were any members of staff from the Mid-Staffs hospitals, whether in management or on the frontline”

“At least 16 babies and two mothers are estimated to have died through neglect”

“Yet all this happened at the very time when the Care Quality Commission was giving the Morecambe Bay NHS Trust a clean bill of health. Through supreme naivety and lack of professionalism, the inspectors from the Commission appear to have ignored the evidence that should have been right in front of them. Effectively, their inspection reports about Morecambe were worthless.”

“One of the most striking features of the Commission’s role in Mid-Staffs and Morecambe was its absolute determination to suppress any dissent.

"Morecambe's chief executive, Tony Halsall, was allowed to leave his job last year with a severance package worth £250,000"

"Like the rulers in the old communist tyrannies, it refused to tolerate any challenge to its operations. In a climate of autocracy, what mattered was protecting not patients, but its own image. Staff had to be muzzled and failure hidden. So when the Commission launched an internal inquiry into the inspection report which had cleared Morecambe Bay Trust in 2010, the findings of that inquiry had to be kept quiet.”

“This can never be in the public domain nor subject to a freedom of information request...
read my lips, ordered one Commission manager with a chilling contempt for accountability.”

“The story of Morecambe and Mid-Staffs is part of the pattern of the modern NHS, where no one is sacked even for the most scandalous incompetence, and where a fortune is wasted on payouts and confidentiality clauses to maintain the illusion of success.”

“David Nicholson, the outgoing chief executive of the NHS, branded by this paper as The Man With No Shame, who was in charge of Mid-Staffs when the scandal first began to break, is reported to have spent £2million on packages to part company with 50 staff which include confidentiality clauses — or so-called gagging orders — which meant they could not speak publicly about mismanagement.

"In the same vein, Morecambe’s chief executive, Tony Halsall, was allowed to leave his job last year with a severance package worth £250,000, while Cynthia Bower, the ex-chief executive of the Care Quality Commission, was allowed to go last September with a £1.35
million pension pot. All that money would be far better spent on patient care.