Friday, 20 April 2007

MTAS 'independent' review - muck unearthed

Following a Freedom of Information request to our dictators at the DoH, a reply as regards the MTAS review panel has been received:

"You asked who appointed the review group panel. I can confirm that Clare Chapman, Director General of Workforce at the Department of Health had overall responsibility for considering who was appropriate to sit on the review group.

With regards to ministerial level discussions, Ms Chapman discussed these choices with the Secretary of State for Health.

In terms of the transcripts from the review group meetings, I can confirm that the Department holds correspondence in relation to consultations between Government Ministers and interested parties, including advice in the development of policy process that determined the decisions of the review group. The Department considers, however, that this information is exempt from disclosure under section 35 of the FOI Act."

Thus Clare Chapman, a DoH employee who has been involved in MTAS and MMC, had the responsibility of selecting who sat on the 'independent' MTAS review panel.

Importantly Clare Chapman discussed her choices with Patricia Hewitt, who clearly is another person with a glaring conflict of interest in this area.

The last bit is very sinister indeed, as it reveals that the DoH is withholding information concerning 'advice in the development of policy process that determined the decisions of the review group'; and this information involves government ministers and 'interested parties'- whoever they are?

Even though the DoH is not releasing this correspondence, it becomes abundantly clear that the review group was clearly not 'independent'; it was hand picked by two people who had obvious vested interests in MTAS not being consigned to the dust bin, where it rightly belongs.

Most shocking is the admission from the DoH that the 'independent' review panel had their hands completely tied by decisions that had been made by ministers and 'interested parties', as regards 'advice in the development of policy process'.

The review was therefore nothing more than a political sham, not that I'm particularly surprised at this, it's just disappointing that our politicians are nothing more than corrupt dictators.


Anonymous said...

I am very alarmed by the apparent lack of independence of the review group, but it would seen that the group contains a number of members who may prove to be a thorn in the side of the DoH's during the review.

The Review Group consists of:

Professor Neil Douglas (Chair of the Review Group), Vice Chair of the Academy of Royal Medical Colleges and President Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh

Clare Chapman, Director General of Workforce, Department of Health

Mr Bernard Ribeiro, President of the Royal College of Surgeons of England

Nic Greenfield, Director of Workforce (Education, Regulation & Pay), Department of Health

Dr Judith Hulf, President of the Royal College of Anaesthetists

Dr Paul Dimitri, Chair of the Trainees Group, Academy of Medical Royal Colleges

Professor Martin Marshall, Deputy Chief Medical Officer England, Department of Health

Professor Sheila Hollins, President, Royal College of Psychiatrists

Neil McKay, Chief Executive, East of England Strategic Health Authority

Dr Jonathan Fielden, Chair of Central Consultants & Specialists Committee, British Medical Association

Dr. Jo Hilborne, Chair of Junior Doctors Committee, British Medical Association

Professor Sir Liam Donaldson, Chief Medical Officer England, Department of Health

Dr. Harry Burns, Chief Medical Officer Scotland, Scottish Executive Health Department

Dr Mike Watson, Director, NHS Education for Scotland

Dr Tony Jewell, Chief Medical Officer Wales, Welsh Assembly

Professor Derek Gallen, Postgraduate Dean, Wales Deanery

Michael McBride, Chief Medical Officer, Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety Northern Ireland

Dr Paddy Woods, Senior Medical Officer, Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety Northern Ireland

Sian Thomas, Deputy Director, NHS Employers

As a medical student keen to ensure the future success of ST training I would be fascinated to know how I would go about accessing this kind of information myself.

Garth Marenghi said...

indeed. there is digging underway into the second review, watch this space.

x said...

I assume you have approached the Information Commissioner on the FOI request. Also worth reading the act eg for instance, you can demand that material be sent to you in any format you wish.

Rita Pal

x said...


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I have found them quite useful.


Anonymous said...

Thank you for your very useful advice. In your postings you've alerted me to some very useful information for a budding investigative medical student. I await with interest the response to your latest request!

Anonymous said...

Ferret Fancier, you really should let 2 bodies know about what you have uncovered:

1.) The media
2.) Remedy UK legal team

The media implications are huge! Patsie has been lying (again!).
The figleaf of the flawed MTAS is this "independent" review.