Thursday, 3 October 2013

More news on the 48 suspicious deaths at heatherwood and Wexham Park NHS Trust Hospitals.

Here’s a more detailed report on the new scandal at Heatherwood and Wexham Park NHS Trust although it isn’t much more detailed. We won’t be hearing much more about it either.

I’ve removed the name published by the Telegraph because I don’t think it is right to name someone without evidence – that’s just bullying.

Of course the real story is that we’ve gone 14 years without being told any of this and ‘we’ as patients should have some knowledge and say in what is going on;  Wednesday 02 October 2013


Heatherwood and Wexham Park Foundation Trust has ordered a review of all its surgeons to establish their death and complication rates.

It acted after an internal review found a series of unresolved concerns about possible harm to patients and soured personal relationships between clinicians, dating back to 1999.

A summary of the report shows that concerns were raised about the safety of one surgeon’s performance 14 years ago, the Health Service Journal has reported.

@#£$?&%#@ was later found to have a 40 per cent mortality rate for a high-risk operation, a “radical” gastrectonomy procedure, which he subsequently agreed to stop performing.

However, it is reported that colleagues continued to complain about previous patient deaths. The review details how, over following years, concerns were raised about other members of the team and some surgeons were referred to mediation to address their differences.


The acrimony, and allegations of poor practice, continued despite six internal audits, eight internal investigations, three reviews by the Royal College of Surgeons and several other assessments and reports. The trust has now commissioned Dr Foster, a health analytics company, to produce performance scorecards for every surgeon, showing their mortality and complication rates and the types of patients being treated.

All the surgeons are now operating safely, the trust said yesterday.

The report by InPractice, a consultancy firm, found 48 cases where concerns were raised over possible harm to patients which were not investigated.

One consultant who raised numerous concerns was labelled “vexatious” and lost an employment tribunal alleging discrimination by the trust.

Phillippa Slinger, who took over as chief executive in 2011, said: “The impact of those few, dysfunctional relationships has been felt widely across departments.” She said “more often than not, actions were taken in good faith on the basis of a series of inadequate investigations”.

Notice the ambition, envy and backbiting that seems to characterise consultants who should be co-operating together to build a team that supports each other through a mutual learning process.

Or is that being naïve and foolish of me. I hope not.

Neil Harris

(a don’t stop till you drop production)

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