February 07, 2013

NHS executives & managers can't be "scapegoats"

And Aaron shall lay both his hands upon the head of the live goat, and confess over him all the iniquities of the children of Israel, and all their transgressions in all their sins, putting them upon the head of the goat, and shall send him away by the hand of a fit man into the wilderness;

And the goat shall bear upon him all their iniquities unto a land not inhabited: and he shall let go the goat in the wilderness.
Leviticus 16, 21-22

So a scapegoat is someone who is not to blame. The blameless scapegoat shoulders the sins of others.

Ministers want people close to the NHS front line to be disciplined and struck off. They demand to know why this hasn't happened. But if "the system" is to blame, would that be scapegoating?

"The system" wasn't handed down on tablets of stone. Who designed it? Who runs it? Who enforces it? They are to blame. They could never be scapegoats, for the iniquities are upon their heads to start with.

That goat was innocent, ok?

As for managers who enforced "the system" lower down, why should we consider them blameless? They are paid a lot of our money to run organisations which are there to heal us of illness.  

They know that's their job.

"I was only following orders" wasn't a defence for Nazis. It can't be a defence for managers who run hospitals so that people die and suffer unnecessarily.

Ministers are saying they don't want to create scapegoats. No one is proposing they should. Scapegoats are innocent. It is the guilty who must be sent out into the wilderness.

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