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NHS CEO survey criticised

12th March 2007

The latest survey of NHS chief executives from the Health Service Journal is “based on a self-selecting sampleâ€? writes Kings Fund CEO Niall Dickson in The Guardian.


The survey, which was only completed by a quarter of NHS chief executives, revealed that 70% of the senior managers who responded felt that the health service is "hidebound by bureaucracy".  Over 85% said they felt “battered and bruised by reorganisationâ€? and held the government responsible the financial state of the NHS – something they themselves resent being made to feel responsible for.  While Mr Dickson agrees that much of the financial crisis the NHS finds itself in should be laid at Whitehall’s door, he does argue that local management is not entirely without blame.  “In parts of the country, better financial control has prevented deficits, and few doubt that some services have managed the extra investment better than others,â€? he says.

The survey also suggests that Patricia Hewitt is the least popular secretary of state for health since Labour came to power but Mr Dickson feels she should not take too much notice if this as she inherited lame duck.  “She may be criticised for how she played her hand in her early months in post, but not for the cards she was given,â€? he says.

Mr Dickson’s final point is that the survey misses some key questions. The King’s Fund leader would like to know what impact the new range of incentives is having on efficiency and effectiveness and whether the new commissioning deals are delivering improvements to our beleaguered health service.


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Article Information

Title: NHS CEO survey criticised
Article Id: 2231
Date Added: 12th Mar 2007


Kings Fund

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