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Saturday 10 January 2015

Daily Mail NHS Very Wrong Call

Last May, the legendarily foul mouthed Paul Dacre and his obedient hackery at the Daily Mail gave the impression they had unearthed the Holy Grail itself. “Just imagine an NHS hospital whose standards match those of a top-quality hotel, with a welcoming reception area, polished floors, tasteful artwork on the freshly-painted walls, and menus inspired by a Michelin-starred chef” told the not-at-all-slanted copy.
What's f***ing wrong with pretending I know all about the NHS even though I go private, c***?!? Er, with the greatest of respect, Mr Jay

There was more: “A public hospital where the doctors and nurses … are free to decide what’s best for the patients, and to put good ideas into practice without waiting for the orders of some remote, out-of-touch mandarin. Where the innovative working practices owe more to successful modern companies such as Toyota and Argos than a welfare state system created more than 60 years ago to cater for the needs of a very different Britain”.

And what was the subject of this abjectly grovelling advertorial? Hinchingbrooke Hospital, near Huntingdon, which “only serves to confirm the inefficiency of the National Health Service’s hidebound bureaucrats, with their sclerotic systems and outdated ideology. In truth, its fortunes have been reversed by the entrepreneurial vision and energy of Circle Partnership — the private equity health company handed a ten-year, £1 billion contract to run it as a franchise under the NHS ‘brand’”.

Then came the clincher: “Last week, the 235-bed hospital’s achievement was recognised when it was voted the best in the country for quality of care”. But, it seems, nothing is forever, and yesterday came signs that Circle Healthcare’s campaign of soft-soaping the more easily led parts of the media had progressed not necessarily to its advantage, as they threw in the towel and Hinchingbrooke was put in special measures.

As the deeply subversive Guardian told, “Hinchingbrooke hospital will be placed into special measures after a report by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) revealed a catalogue of serious failings … including in its A&E unit, which put patients in danger and delayed their pain relief. Circle … told the London Stock Exchange earlier that the CQC’s report was one of the reasons it was pulling out of running the hospital”.

The paper’s report continued “The CQC was scathing about the hospital, rating it as “inadequate” overall, and specifically for patient safety, displaying caring towards patients, and leadership … It is the first time the watchdog has found a hospital trust to be inadequate in how it cares for patients”. So much for “best in the country for quality of care”, then. So what did the Mail make of that?

The Dacre doggies have decided to come out fighting: “Was the first privately run NHS hospital victim of a stitch-up by opponents of business providing healthcare?” rants the headline this morning. The article bleats “The CQC’s findings are at odds with an award given to the hospital in May for being the best trust in England for quality of care, by the data monitoring firm CHKS”. Yeah, right.

Let the spin and excuses begin. You called it wrong, Mail people. Get over it.

1 comment:

Arnold said...

If a DM headline consists of a question, it's safe to assume that the answer is "no".