Sir Bruce has said “The purpose of my investigation is to assure patients, public and Parliament that these hospitals understand why they have a high mortality and have all the support they need to improve.”
This is a good opportunity for Bucks NHS to be open and transparent so we can get to the bottom of what is going on. Far too often, I hear reports second or third hand, by which time they are hearsay and I cannot use them.
I would implore NHS staff to take this opportunity to use the official whistle-blowing channels and, if necessary, to come and see me with relevant information. I will protect identities but pursue the substance of matters brought to my attention. I can be contacted through the methods listed here.
NHS staff are employed to provide the best service for patients and they are paid well for doing so. In answer to a recent Parliamentary Question, I was told that 488 members of staff in the NHS in Bucks in 2011-12 earned over £50,000. I intend to establish how many of these were clinical staff and how many were managers but, at these pay levels, the public is entitled to expect more.
The recently released Francis Report clearly demonstrates there is a lack of accountability within the NHS. That is something we must change. This investigation is an excellent opportunity for transformation.