Beyond sanction

I read the latest Sloven minutes properly today. As always, large chunks of incomprehensible guff and spin. For example: Simon Waugh asked for further clarification as to the reference to the use of “appreciative enquiry”, as stated in the Director of Quality’s report; Chris Gordon explained that this was a tool used by the CQC which looked to triangulate sources of information and used a framework of support and challenge to develop learning organisations. Eh?

Further on was a screeching brake moment. Page 16. A  glitzy pink table refers to the investigation that cheeky David Nicholson committed to, back in the day. One of the objectives of the Connor Manifesto.  As the Real DN outlined in his letter to us in March;

We are also asking that Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust provides the NHS England Area Team with details of all the patients who have died whilst receiving mental health and learning disability services since the trust was formed in April 2011. An independent panel, commissioned by NHS England, will then be formed to review all of the information, including the cause of death, and make a
recommendation as to whether further investigation is required.

All good. An independent panel and all that. Given both LB and Nico Reed were whizzled to the ‘natural cause’ pile before you could say Slovenshite (and the broader shocking statistics around mortality among learning disabled people) it’s crucial to have a good look at the premature deaths of learning disabled people (sob) and make sure failings/issues aren’t being overlooked or ignored.

The Slovens clearly have a different take on this review. Bit like their response to the recent Monitor enforcement action against them which was presented almost in a comedic way (er, just making a few plans with current bezzy, Monitor, over tea and cake…) The pink table states the ‘current position’ as:

Chief Operating Officer & Deputy  Chief Executive informed the Board that Thames Valley LAT was coordinating this review, which was comprised of two phases. The first related to looking at benchmarking and comparative data to determine whether the Trust was an outlier; she noted that if there were any areas of concern, a second phase would be commissioned, which would be a deep dive review.

The final column in the table states that the review is ‘proposed for closure’. Proposed for closure. Before it’s even started.

Wowser. What happened to the independent panel? And review of all information?

What a breathtaking example of what? I don’t know. Spin? Gobsmacking arrogance? Stupidity? Denial? Of ‘too big to fail’? Certainly how Sloven don’t get people. Well not learning disabled people. Benchmarking and comparative data? We’re talking about patients who have died unexpectedly.

And how can they dilute a serious review into a bit of number crunching? When it ain’t even their fucking review?

I’m out of ideas. A year on and there has been no sanction against any individual/s or the Slovens/Local Authority or Clinical Commissioning Group. And now it seems we have to police the small steps (we think) we’ve achieved.

The system stinks like a Stinky Pete leather tannery in Morocco. And the Slovens seem to have a unlimited supply of mint leaves to stuff under their noses and pass through. Unaffected. And seemingly unconcerned.

3 thoughts on “Beyond sanction

  1. Funny old definition of ‘appreciative inquiry’. My plain English understanding of it is 1) seeking out examples of what your organisation currently does well, and 2) learning from them to spread the good practice to other areas. Which is easy to understand, and can be useful to help some reasonably OK organisations do better – but it’s not a solution for catastrophically poor practice. Especially if your understanding of what it means is just a string of jargon ….

  2. It occurs to me that part of the problem is that anyone with any self-respect and intelligence could not even attempt to communicate in this meaningless, intellectually and morally empty form of management speak – but those who are fluent in it, and too dim to care, prosper. “Deep diving”? In THESE contexts?

    Orwell was well aware of the use of language to obscure meaning and close down thought. Works well for the career minded.

    • It seems to me that ‘the Masonic Lodge’ mentality so loved by our politicians has spread out to include the NHS/Social Care industry too. Arse covers the lot of them.

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