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Ian Patterson and Heartlands Hospital (The Kennedy Review)

Professor Kennedy's report into the practice of Ian Patterson at Heartlands Hospital has just been released.  It is a good report and demonstrates how confidentiality can at times be used to protect the interests of the powerful.

The problem is a more general culture of the Health Service to cover things up rather than resolve issues.

I have two cases at Heartlands Hospital where whistle-blowers have found themselves subject to disciplinary action.  I have raised these with the hospital, but am unhappy with the response from the hospital.  The whistleblowing does not relate to the care of patients, but the same principles apply.

From his report:
14.36 It is wrong, as well as pointless, to seek to control the flow of information to outside
bodies so as to contain the impact of any particular event or set of circumstances. It
prevents others from taking appropriate measures. It ensures that partial information
will emerge in an unsystematic manner, thereby damaging patients and the Trust
much more than would be the case with full, open communication. And, most
important, it is a breach of trust.




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R v SUSSEX JUSTICES ex p McCARTHY [1924] 1 KB 256

I have only just found this one which I think is accurately reported below (but if it is not please give me an accurate report).

KING’S BENCH DIVISION

R v SUSSEX JUSTICES ex p McCARTHY [1924] 1 KB 256

November 9 1923

Editor’s comments in bold.

Here, the magistrates’ clerk retired with the bench when they were considering a charge of dangerous driving. The clerk belonged to a firm of solicitors acting in civil proceedings for the other party to the accident. It was entirely irrelevant that there had been no evidence of actual influence brought to bear on the magistrates, and the conviction was duly quashed.

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It is clear that the deputy clerk was a member of the firm of solicitors engaged in the conduct of proceedings for damages against the applicant in respect of the same collision as that which gave rise to the charge that the justices were considering. It is said, and, no doubt, truly, that when that gentleman retired in the usual way with the justices, taking with him the…