Thursday, 3 July 2014

Liverpool Care Pathway - Blowing The Whistle On The Half Century

Even now, after everything, despite all...

Almost fifty years ago, a book was published that shook the NHS and fired a blast that caused a stir of debate in the House such that, it seemed, it just would not go away.

The book: "Sans Everything" by Barbara Robb.

"Sans Everything"...?

From the seven ages of man -

As You Like It

Act 2, Scene 7, Page 7

Seeking the bubble reputation
Even in the cannon’s mouth. And then the justice,
In fair round belly with good capon lined,
With eyes severe and beard of formal cut,
Full of wise saws and modern instances;
And so he plays his part. The sixth age shifts
Into the lean and slippered pantaloon
With spectacles on nose and pouch on side,
His youthful hose, well saved, a world too wide
For his shrunk shank, and his big manly voice,
Turning again toward childish treble, pipes
And whistles in his sound. Last scene of all,
That ends this strange eventful history,
Is second childishness and mere oblivion,
Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.

Almost fifty years later, she of the bubble reputation seeking to salvage tarnished reputations...

Dr. Jane Collins, Trouble Bubble Shooter at Great Ormond...
... and, latterly, Mary Curie. And the links are going down; the pages are being redirected.

And the whistleblowers are still being hung out to dry...

Care has become Care LESS (Locally Enhanced Services Specification) and treatment options downsized.

This is HSJ –
Recent whistleblower cases have shown that there are brave souls in our healthcare system who are willing to raise the flag on bad practice.

However, their experiences suggest that all too often whistleblowers are whistling in the wind if there is no genuine desire in an organisation to learn from the exposed wrongdoing, and use it to improve the services they provide.
“Systems to support and protect whistleblowers through the process seem to be lagging behind the rhetoric”
The CQC and the NHS are in the full glare of the public eye now and need to get their house in order quickly if public trust is not to be irreparably damaged. Protecting practitioners brave enough to raise alarms must be at the heart of driving change in the NHS and, ultimately, protecting patients.
And now a Francis Report into NHS Whistleblowing...

This is Nursing Times –

Sir Robert Francis QC is to lead a review of how whistleblowers are treated in the NHS, it has been announced today.

It follows calls for a public inquiry into whistleblowing in the NHS by a number of high profile whistleblowers and their supporters, including Patients First, a campaign group headed by former Great Ormond Street paediatrician Kim Holt, and GP and Private Eye journalist Phil Hammond.
I’m sure I grew up in a world where, if you did your job right, you kept your job; if you didn’t, you got the sack. It’s what you’re paid to do, plain and simple.


This is the Patient Safety Awards –

Patient safety...

Isn’t that something that just goes along with the job?

Well, no.

This is The Independent –
The bosses of the Care Quality Commission watchdog are to be summoned to Parliament to explain an alleged cover-up over a hospital where as many as 16 babies died.

And HSJ reveals that the CQC is being sued. The Chair and Chief Executive of the Care Quality Commission are alleged to have abused their power and acted maliciously in publishing allegations that a former executive ordered a cover up of the regulator’s failings.

And wrong-doing commissions wrong-doing.

No Leadership Academy may help them. They have lost their way. They need the substance of moral grounding; just common decency, plain and simple, not leadership.

Those who have little hope because of their condition are offered no hope by denying them what treatment options there are.

When it is enough that they must fight their condition, they must fight the system to obtain treatment for that condition.

They are urged to sign documents to sign away their treatment options.

Resignation replaces defiance and the will to live. My cousin Stateside is feeling the rigours of her elder years but, as she says, she isn't planning on checking out just yet.

Final word -
"...It matters that you don't just give up."

-- Professor Stephen Hawking on his 70th birthday.
Pertinent reading –
Liverpool Care Pathway - The Trouble Bubble Shooter
Liverpool Care Pathway - Still On The Sly
Liverpool Care Pathway - Blowing The Whistle
50 years, and how many more...?

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