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“2020health is an important and thoughtful contributor to the health debate”

Dr Sarah Wollaston MP, Chairman, Health Select Committee

 
 

PharmaTimes online Mid Staffs report slams NHS culture

The public enquiry into the major failings at an NHS hospital is recommending that hospital staff and managers should face prosecution if patients are harmed or killed as a result of poor care.

Gail Beer, Director at the 2020health think-tank and a former hospital director, said: “We need to remember the events at Mid-Staffs happened during a time of unprecedented growth so how can money have been the issue. Although the Strategic Health Authority and hospital Trust Boards were responsible for making sure care was delivered, the focus was always on money and targets. If you got these right, it seemed it didn’t matter if your outcomes were poor.

“[Prime Minister] David Cameron has already announced a new Chief Inspector of Hospitals, but this feels like adding another layer of bureaucracy instead of dealing with the NHS culture dominated by fear and figures.

“As sector regulators, the [regulators] Care Quality Commission and Monitor need to be totally separate from the NHS so they have the freedom to test and challenge without any political pressure being brought to bear. At the moment only the Health Select Committee seem to have a truly independent voice.”