Friday, March 30, 2018

Ian Kennedy's back

I appreciated Ian Kennedy's Reith lectures in 1980 (see previous post). But I think he got caught up in a managerialism (see another previous post), which had disastrous consequences for the Healthcare Commission (see another previous post), of which he was the chair, and may have contributed to a phase of bullying in the NHS (see another previous post) and even the mid-Staffs inquiry (see yet another previous post), in which there was an element of scapegoating which has still not been adequately recognised and accepted (see even another previous post).

However, he seems to have now come back 'on song'. As reported in the BMJ, he is quoted as saying that the "role of criminal law and medical manslaughter in cases where doctors make mistakes must be rethought" (see news item). After all, David Sellu was jailed for gross negligence manslaughter and later had his conviction overturned (see another BMJ news item). This has relevance for the Hazida Bawa-Garba case (see timeline). It even has relevance for the Ian Paterson case which Kennedy himself reviewed (see yet another BMJ news item). Even the prosecutor at the trial admitted that Paterson's motives remained obscure (see BMJ news item). However unprofessional his conduct may have been he seems to have not been aware of it. Paterson maintained his innocence throughout the trial and sat with his eyes mostly closed, shaking his head throughout the statements (see another BMJ news item).

Maybe Kennedy is angling to do the report on this matter. He even did the MPs' expenses inquiry. I do wonder though whether he ought to hand over to someone else.