General Messenger, who led the Royal Marines’ invasion of Iraq may appear an odd choice to review NHS management, but with the ink barely dry on his new report the Health Secretary reframed its conclusions, using it to suggest a series of new management cuts, a proposal which General Messenger says was not part of his report.
The NHS Confederation welcomed the tone of the report but was bitter about the attack on managers that followed as the Health Secretary, vowed to be ‘watchful of any waste or wokery’, and to divert managers’ salaries to treating waiting lists.
The NHS has a long history of trying to review its management, dating back to when Sainsbury’s boss Roy Griffiths produced recommendations in 1983 to define the role of managers and tipped the balance of power in their direction.
The issue remains serious, with the latest patient safety scandal surrounding maternity practices at Shrewsbury and Telford hospital trust under police investigation after an independent report found that the lives of 201 babies could have been saved with better care.
Full story in The Lowdown, 14 June 2022