Away with words

Posted on August 6th, by geoff in Caring Times, CT blog. 1 Comment

By guest blogger JOHN BURTON

Most organisations have a way with words – PR. “We are an open and honest organisation and the welfare/happiness/satisfaction/safety of our customers/users/stakeholders/the public is our first priority. Please tell us about your experience. We are a learning organisation.” And so on. Think of the banks and the energy suppliers, the rail and water companies. Honest and open as the day is long . . . always have been. They have only their customers at heart.

On July 24th CQC posted an article on their website: “Review of safeguarding alerts”. On July 18th “CQC identified a technical issue within our data management system that may have delayed or prevented the timely referral of some safeguarding information to local authorities.” [] The article goes on to say that there were 96 such “concerns” since last July and none of them posed an “immediate risk of severe harm to people”.

“The system and process error has now been corrected and CQC will be carrying out an independent investigation into the root cause of this situation which CQC’s Board will consider and we will report on publically (sic) in due course.” (I wonder if “publically” is a different sort of transparency from publicly?).

Well, that’s alright then. CQC has picked up a fault in its system, has already put it right, will pay for a thorough investigation (although it knows what went wrong), and will tell us all about it all over again. No mention of the fact that many of us have been telling them for years what the “root cause” is.

On the very same day that the error was “identified”, there was a public board meeting of CQC. Reports on speaking up and whistleblowing, digital and intelligence, and surveillance were all discussed without challenge, but there was not a mention of this “system and process error” that resulted in 91 safeguarding alerts not being passed on to local authorities. A lesson in how to effect a transparent cover-up, but don’’t let CQC catch you trying the same trick.

  • The CT Blog is written in a personal capacity – comments and opinions expressed are not necessarily endorsed or supported by Caring Times.

One response to “Away with words”

  1. Kevin Groombridge says:

    We know that CQC is unaccountable in any meaningful way, who checks them? Who do they report to? They argue that they are accountable to Parliament, yes there is something in this but how are they accountable in operational terms? This issue of “data management” error is an example of how they police themselves. It’s the same if there is a complaint against an inspector or a report, they have an internal, so-called independent review, by their own employee who is subject to the same cultural and career pressures as those being reviewed. Is it time to for CQC to become properly accountable so that issues are subject to checks by fully independent bodies?

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