NHS: first they came for our pensions, then they came for our bribes

There’s something bugging me.

The Knife is ostensibly a fairly established NHS surgeon, slowly becoming a “senior” figure, whatever that means. Then I read in various papers, and hear it on the TV news that NHS consultants such as me “know of problems but cannot speak out. We only hear about it when there is a big case like Mid Staffs, but now it seems it is more widespread”.

Golly. Well actually, yes, I do know of a few problems in our public sector healthcare.

But there’s more, in this case regarding the widely misinterpreted Mid Staffs business:

‘For years, this dreadful care went on and no doctor put his head above the parapet,’ he said. ‘Why is that? One part of the answer is that they are frightened. ‘Even if you are an alpha-male surgeon, you are frightened. We might feel that’s not good enough, but that is the situation.’

Well, I hesitate to award myself the ‘alpha male’ tag, but as the saying goes, walls are for physicians**.

What happens to all these terrified alpha males? Back to the Daily Mail (of course):

NHS bosses have spent £4million in three years secretly gagging whistleblowers concerned about patient care.

Dozens of doctors, nurses and other staff have been quietly paid off in return for not speaking out.
That’s it!! Now I’m mad. I have two major problems with this nonsense:
1. It’s a pretty damning indictment to claim that NHS doctors can be bought off when patients’ care is at risk. We’re not MP’s! Ours is a higher calling.
2. In all the many times that I’ve moaned and complained, verbally, in writing, at meetings, all the way up to government, NOT ONCE has anyone offered me cash. Not once.
It’s a bloody disgrace. I’m contacting my MP.
...that'll do nicely minister. Just leave it in Tesco carpark..
…that’ll do nicely minister. Just leave it in Tesco carpark..
** See forthcoming post.
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