The Gen­eral Med­i­cal Coun­cil must be held to ac­count over Gosport

The Daily Telegraph - - Letters To The Editor -

SIR – The cover-up cul­ture in the NHS is not the only com­mon strand run­ning through the re­cent in­stances of med­i­cal mal­prac­tice.

Like Dr Jane Bar­ton, the Gen­eral Med­i­cal Coun­cil must now be held to ac­count for a long se­ries of ill-judged de­ci­sions. Prof Gareth Wil­liams

Berke­ley, Glouces­ter­shire

SIR – With re­gard to the Gosport War Me­mo­rial Hospi­tal deaths, I am in a po­si­tion to make an in­spired prophecy.

1. An of­fi­cial in­quiry will sit over a min­i­mum of three years.

2. Dur­ing that time mil­lions of pounds will be trans­ferred from the pock­ets of tax­pay­ers into those of lawyers.

3. When a con­clu­sion is fi­nally ar­rived at, er­rors will be ac­knowl­edged and no one will be pun­ished.

4. The Sec­re­tary of State will de­clare ro­bustly: “Les­sons have been learnt.”

Life will then con­tinue un­changed, ex­cept for rel­a­tives of those who died. Niko­lai Tol­stoy

South­moor, Berk­shire

SIR – It is a na­tional shame that the com­mem­o­ra­tion of the end of the First World War should now be tainted by rev­e­la­tions at Gosport War Me­mo­rial Hospi­tal, set up in 1923 to hon­our the fallen and care for their de­scen­dants. Kay Glad­stone

Lon­don SW6

SIR – The case of Dr Jane Bar­ton raises the ques­tion about her be­ing able to over­see all these poor pa­tients ap­par­ently un­su­per­vised.

A part-time clin­i­cal as­sis­tant post of­ten re­quires no higher post­grad­u­ate qual­i­fi­ca­tions. Cer­tainly she should never have been in over­all con­trol of pa­tient care at Gosport hospi­tal. Dr Bryan Goodrich

Poole, Dorset

SIR – The sit­u­a­tion that arose at Gosport is typ­i­cal of what hap­pens in na­tion­alised in­dus­tries (which the NHS is).

The in­ter­ests of man­age­ment (pro­mo­tion, salaries etc) come first, the staff sec­ond, and the in­ter­ests of cus­tomers (in the NHS, pa­tients) a very poor third. A busi­ness op­er­at­ing like this would not sur­vive very long. Ge­of­frey Wyartt

Newent, Glouces­ter­shire

SIR – Sadly it is not just within the NHS that the fail­ure of bu­reau­crats to re­spond to pub­lic com­plaints is ap­par­ent.

It seems that in every area of pub­lic ser­vice the word ser­vice has been for­got­ten.

In­deed the gen­eral pub­lic are looked upon as trou­ble­mak­ers if they at­tempt to hold pub­lic ser­vants to ac­count.

Hon­esty and in­tegrity dis­ap­peared dur­ing the Blair era and are never likely to re­turn. Roger Howard

Bish­ops Waltham, Hamp­shire

SIR – Can some­one ex­plain to me the dif­fer­ence be­tween “cut­ting short” some­one’s life and killing them? Ian John­son

Cirences­ter, Glouces­ter­shire

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