Saturday 22nd June
I know that this is risky and I will be accused of sexism, misanthropy and all the rest, but I am ploughing on regardless. The Scandal about the scandal about the scandal about deaths at a hospital in Barrow & Furness rumbles on and on. There is no doubt that in anyone’s book there was a cover-up. The Care and Quality Commission, set up by Labour incidentally because there was nothing before this, was intended to be a sort of Ofsted for the NHS. It started out with very good intentions, and the hospital in question was ‘inspected’ in 2010 and given a clean bill of health. However of course this was a very poor report which somehow missed the mistakes at the Hospital, which of course had been covered up in the first place.
Well, an internal review by the CQC was ordered to see how these problems went unnoticed by the CQC itself. So an internal look into how mistakes had been made by the people who were supposed to be making sure mistakes and cover-ups weren’t made by others. The report was compiled by Louise Dineley and is supposed to be highly critical of the original inspection. Are you still with me, because this gets worse. There have since been changes at the top of the CQC and Grant Thornton were brought in as consultants to look at failings of the organisation. They have discovered that this internal review had been discussed by the author and the three most senior people working at the CQC at the time and because it was so critical it was ordered to be deleted. In other words another cover-up. Then even this cover-up was covered up, in that the names of the women ordering the cover-up were covered-up. Even to the extent of ‘naming’ the four women all as Mr E, Mr D, etc: Why change the sex, why couldn’t we know they were women?
Anyway it has all, or almost all, now come out and what is shocking apart from the horrendously high salaries these women were earning (for what precisely) was the callous and self-serving way they decided to suppress the truth that they were crap at their jobs. To say nothing of the continuing distress for the real victims at the hospital in the question, which all seem to have forgotten.
I have worked for several women in my career, and some were quite good, but they all had a tendency to react to any situation by asking themselves “How do I look in this situation? How does this reflect on me?” rather than what is the best solution. It may be that women in the workplace are under more pressure to perform well, it may be that they are constantly aware of men’s critical appraisal of them, but they do tend to think of themselves first, just watch any episode of the Apprentice and you will see what I mean. (Teamwork? Forget it.) A word of advice to women at work. Be prepared to admit that you got it wrong occasionally and you will not only gain respect but actually make better decisions and become a team player. Honesty is hard but always the best policy.