8th January 2016

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Last day of this deal - come along it will be a cracking evening.
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HealthChat Two tickets for 49.95 Plus a free glass of wine, or two!
 Fascinating guests; Sir Cyril Chantler and Stephen Dorrell
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I'm not so sure
News and Comment from Roy Lilley
Earlier this week I wrote about whistle-blowing.  I think I said something like it being 'top of the NHS to-do-list'.  Whistle-blowing is corrosive and eats away at the heart and spirit of even the bravest soul.  I know it is true as I have regular evidence in my in-box to back it up.
Careers have been ruined and it is not an exaggeration to say; so have lives.  As one of the biggest employers in the world, the NHS makes a world-class mess of listening to its people.
The NHS is high risk; of course things will go wrong.  People will be prescribed the wrong drugs, bits and pieces will be left in them, they will  be neglected even abused.  Damaged, maybe.  Tiredness, ignorance, wilfulness, carelessness and good old fashioned mistakes will combine and sometimes, tragedy; people will die. 
Errors are normal but covering them up isn't.
The question is why do we over them up?  Why don't we speak out?  We know, don't we?  The answer... more often than not, the consequences mean retribution, fear, persecution, prosecution, denounced, humiliated, ostracised and careers in ruins.
Managers tortured by targets become bullies, frontline staff worked to a frazzle, every pound made to do the job of two.  Hard work becomes hard graft, becomes grind, drudgery followed by grievance, resentment and downright frustration.
The DH response to this disease, that silently spreads and afflicts so much of the NHS, is Robert Francis' extra layer of bureaucracy that will push management and the organisation's problems further apart; guardians in hospitals and a national guardian to boss it all.
I make no bones about the fact that I think it is the wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong way to go about it and said so.
However, the fact that it is on the agenda, visible and the Tinkerman is having a go at doing something about sorting it... it's better than doing nothing. 
So, what has driven me to the edge of despair?  The source of my frustration?  Once again the clod-hopping, ignorance of the CQC. 
They are to be responsible for the national guardian, whistleblowing programme, thing.  A huge task of trust and expectation and hope requiring focus, time, patience and single minded attention to details, nuance and deftness of touch. 
Such is the importance of whistle-blowing in the mind of the CQC they have appointed a part time chief guardian.  Part time.  Part time!  Gimmestrength!  Part time! 
For a couple of days a week Eileen Sills, the chief nurse, director of patient experience and infection control at Guy's Trust in London will be the guardian of the guardians.
Quite what has persuaded the Board at Guys that they suddenly need only a part time chief nurse, director of patient experience and infection control is quite beyond me?  It might make the UCLH FT, down the road, a safer bet.
What has persuaded the CQC the NHS needs only a part time boss of one of the most toxic issues in the NHS defies all explanation.
Ms Sills, a Dame Commander of the British Empire, is undoubtedly qualified, experienced, talented, energetic and charming and has, herself, made inroads into this lethal topic but I doubt she has discovered the secrets of time travel, an elastic hour glass or how to create a week of nine days.
A part-time appointment is an affront to anyone who has suffered merely because they wanted to tell the truth about where they work and paid the crushing consequences.  It waves two fingers at anyone reduced to tears by a thug of a boss, a shift from hell or has the misfortune to witness malpractice.
This is what the Twitter community thought about a part-time appointment.
The CQC have had this task dumped on them by the Tinkerman.  A job they clearly don't want to do and more important, don't know how to do.  There will be conferences, workshops, papers, guidance, mutual admiration and much running around but when all is said and done, there will be more said than done. 
Whistle blowing is not a part time job.  It is a full time curse and an ever present preoccupation for huge numbers of our colleagues working in every part of the NHS.
Did I say 'at least the Tinkerman is doing something'?  On second thoughts is doing 'this' something better than doing nothing... I'm not so sure.
Have a good weekend.
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11th February at  
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Former Secretary of
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'the reforms were the biggest mistake of the Parliament'
This is what I'm hearing;
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>> I'm hearing - there is quite a head of steam building up for the idea of some sort of 'cross-party commission on the future of healthcare'.  I'm also hearing Number 10 will never agree to it as it would be construed as an admission of failure of their policies.
>>  I'm hearing - Number 10 will agree to a sugar-tax.
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