January 09, 2013

Martin Yeates resigns again

So Martin Yeates of Mid Staffs infamy has belatedly resigned from the charity Impact Alcohol and Addiction Services in Shropshire after a few months in the job - a resignation that was inevitable.
  1. When he resigned from Mid Staffs Hospital he left with a huge payout. Hopefully the charity has given him nothing.
  2. But why did the charity appoint him in the first place? David Bell and the other trustees have big questions to answer.
  3. Martin Yeates was responsible for a hospital where poor care killed hundreds of people. He must never again be employed in any role to do with the NHS. Isn't that obvious?
There must be more resignations to come and doubtless will be. That's not the main issue any more.

This is the last chance for state run hospitals. Jeremy Hunt has already said failing managers can't expect to keep their jobs. Good. But can he defeat the cosy inertia of the NHS?

We will see what the coalition does to try to make regulation of hospitals effective. Is there a Michael Wilshaw from within the NHS, passionate about patient care, to lead an effective regulator?

A regulator will need an oversight board. Not one made up of the comfortable great and good, but drawn from those who have campaigned for years after losing family members. They can be relied on to keep any regulator's feet to the fire.

Of course life will become less cosy for those at the commanding heights of the NHS. About time. It needs tireless representatives of patients and taxpayers at its centre. And they must remain free to speak their minds publicly.


Edward Spalton said...

If a private company -a restaurant chain perhaps- had killed hundreds of people by negligence with food poisoning,say, there would have been vigorous prosecutions and exemplary sentences. In the case of a hospital, there should be manslaughter charges against the managers in office at the time.

John Page said...

They're in a huge organisation and they're in the state sector. Both help make the NHS a fortress.

For my money, state run hospitals as part of a huge nationalised industry are in the last chance saloon.