CQC names those involved in Morcambe Bay cover-up
Caring Times, July/August 2013
The Care Quality Commission responded to mounting pressure in June by releasing the names of its senior staff who were involved in the widely reported cover-up of failures in it monitoring and oversight of University Hospitals Morecambe Bay.
Following the publication of its report in University Hospitals Morecambe Bay, CQC took further advice regarding the naming of individuals in the report.
CQC’s Chairman and Chief Executive have written to the Secretary of State to inform of this and to advise him of the names of the individuals named in the report.
Text of letter to Secretary of State
Dear Secretary of State
Following the publication of the independent report by Grant Thornton into CQC’s monitoring and oversight of University Hospitals Morecambe Bay, this letter provides you with an update on our decision following the further advice we have received regarding the naming of individuals in the report.
As you know, this is a report CQC always wanted in the public domain as part being an open and transparent organisation. We are changing the culture of the organisation and the commissioning and publication of this report symbolises that approach.
You will be aware that we took legal advice in order to ensure we were able to publish the report at our public board meeting. That advice raised certain risks if the report was not anonymised, including breaches of the Data Protection Act.
We have reviewed the issues again with our legal advisers (and taken into account the comments of the Information Commissioner). In the light of this further consideration, we have come to the view that the overriding public interest in transparency and accountability gives us sufficient grounds to disclose the names of the individuals who were anonymised in the report.
The report identifies the key actions and decisions taken by the individuals involved although, as the report makes clear, some of these actions are disputed. Nevertheless CQC has taken the decision to publish the names of the key individuals, both current and past employees of CQC that were either involved in the meeting, interviewed by Grant Thornton or who are referred to in the report.
There were 4 members of staff present when the discussion about deletion occurred:
Mr E: Cynthia Bower – former Chief Executive – Resigned
Mr F: Anna Jefferson – media manager – Current Employee
Mr G: Jill Finney – former Deputy Chief Executive – Resigned
Mr J: Louise Dineley – Head of Regulatory Risk & Quality – Current Employee
Other individuals interviewed by Grant Thornton about the meeting but not present:
Mr B: Dame Jo Williams – former chair of CQC – Resigned
Mr D: Amanda Sherlock – former Director of Operations – Redundant
The other senior individual referred to in the report are:
Mr C: Louise Guss – former Director of Governance and Legal Services – Redundant
Mr K: Dr Martin Marshall – former Board Member – Term Ended
Mr N: Sue McMillan – former Regional Director, North West – Current Employee
Of the other 2: ‘L’ works for another organisation ‘H’ is a junior member of staff and neither were involved in a decision to “cover up.”
3 letters, ‘A’ ‘I’ and ‘M’ were not used.
Since the publication of the report we are seeking advice on whether there is any appropriate action that might be taken in relation to the named individuals and will keep you advised of this.
We have also decided to publish CQC’s internal review into our regulatory activities into UHMB.