At first blush, 20% of the £2.4 billions maternity budget of the NHS being spent on clinical negligence cover by NHS England (the equivalent of £700 per live birth) seems, at least, an arguable precaution. Any business – SME or large/corporate – should taken reasonable precautions regarding insurance.
In response to Public Accounts Committee chair, Margaret Hodge’s description of this as “scandalous”, one proffered explanation has been that an as yet unexplained rise in claims has been a major cause. (I am unsure of an equivalent break-down for NHS Scotland, but medical payments of over £200 millions over the past six years have been linked to a similar rise in claims.)
What would make such bills easier to accept would be if there were a noticeable rise in medical professionals and managerial staff being vigorously investigated for failings, such as at Mid Staffs: instead of being elevated from CEO of the oversight body for Mid Staffs to CEO of NHS England as occurred with David Nicholson.
Elsewhere in NHS England, managers at Colchester General Hospital dismiss claims of staff being bullied into suppressing negative cancer treatment figures: an allegation now under investigation by the Police.
As always, although the Chairman of NHS England is Malcolm Grant who expressed consternation that being middle-class and degree educated did not preclude support for bloody violence, this does not relate to Israel or Muslims or anything in between.