Monday, August 09, 2010

We're perplexed

If Britain's National Health Service is such a shining example of health care success for us former colonists here in America to emulate, then why is that particular agency paying out millions of dollars in hush money to at least 170 former doctors in order to prevent those physicians from "speaking out about incompetence and mistakes in patient care"?

Here's but one example of how those bullying bureaucrats are nakedly attempting to bribe the doctors who are brave enough to speak out about the atrocious conditions permeating that system, despite laws ostensibly in place to specifically prevent any retaliation for their doing so:

"A consultant paediatrician who told the Baby P inquiry that her unit had inadequate staffing levels was offered £120,000 to keep quiet, she has revealed. Dr Kim Holt, left, repeatedly told her management she believed children's services at St Ann's Hospital in north London were unsafe and first approached them more than a year before Baby P's death. Her employer, Great Ormond Street Hospital, was willing to give her £120,000 to stop her talking publicly about her concerns and to sign a document agreeing they had been addressed.

Baby P, whose real name was Peter Connelly, died in August 2007 two days after being taken to St Ann's where a locum failed to spot his back was broken. Dr Holt and three other consultants had written a letter to management the previous year warning the clinic was "falling apart" and risking patients' lives. She was offered the money after Baby P's death. 

'I was not going to be gagged,' she said. 'I've done nothing wrong. I raised concerns: it was obvious the place was a mess. I refused to retract my concerns. They wanted me to stay quiet'" 

We applaud Dr. Holt for standing up to that kind of attempted official gagging, especially since doing so ended up getting her placed on "special leave" despite those supposed whistle-blower protections.  Those anti-retaliation laws seem to be working quite well, don't they?

"David Bowles, the former chairman of an NHS Trust, told Channel 4 that he believed their use was 'endemic'. 'You shouldn't be at a position of needing a compromise agreement with a whistleblower. You should never get to that point in the first place. You should have listened to the concerns and you should have managed them in accordance with legislation and indeed the NHS's own published code.'"

Mr. Bowles sounds like an eminently reasonable man.  No wonder he can no longer stomach working for that abominable agency.

How long until the newly-appointed and unwanted health care "czars" who are apparently going to be mismanaging every aspect of our health care come up with the same brilliant idea - bribing doctors with your own money to not publicly disclose the inevitable massive failures of Dear Leader's shiny new Ponzi scheme?  Not long at all, we're willing to bet.

Oh, and the thing that really struck us about the article?  The ad for private health insurance that appeared below it on the Independent's webpage:

Our British readers should immediately sign up for that timely offer, even though it would mean paying twice for health care.  At least they would then be assured of eventually receiving some.

1 comment:

Bike Bubba said...

What would be the response if, say, United Health or Blue Cross was credibly accused of doing this?