From the Daily Telegraph in London: “Ministers ignored safety warnings for years over children’s heart surgery.”
Ministers dismissed a warning in 2003 by the UK’s most senior heart surgeon that half of Britain’s units should be closed. As President of the Society for Cardiothoracic Surgeons (SCTS) of Great Britain and Ireland, Prof James Monro was commissioned by ministers to propose changes following the Bristol inquiry, yet “the Government did absolutely nothing” about his key demand, he told The Sunday Telegraph;
Sir Bruce Keogh, medical director of the health service, told NHS bosses two years ago that he feared “another Bristol” tragedy because specialists were so thinly spread;
The consultant told this newspaper “there has been frankly little progress” reorganising services to make them safer since the public inquiry reported in 2001. Sir Bruce recently told colleagues that failing to make changes now would leave “a stain on the soul” of his profession.
Britain’s leading children’s heart charity says Labour ministers “ran scared” from introducing an overhaul of the specialist system which could have saved lives, and prevented major disabilities.
The public inquiry into the Bristol heart deaths scandal was the most damning in the history of the NHS.
The great mystery of the health care debate is why liberals, who don’t trust doctors, hospitals, pharmaceutical companies or insurers, trust Congress and federal bureaucrats.