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‘We are presiding over a failing NHS,’ say leading trust CEOs

A lack of accountability is causing the quality of NHS services to crumble, according to some of the most respected trust chief executives.

They said the problem arose from four factors: the lack of an operating model for how NHS England should oversee the service, confusion over what integrated care systems should be responsible for, the lack of clarity on which standards providers should be seeking to meet, and trust leaders not holding each other to account.

The views were expressed at a roundtable to mark the publication of HSJ’s annual ranking of the NHS’s “top 50 trust chief executives”.

The most strongly worded contribution came from Milton Keynes University Hospital Foundation Trust chief executive Joe Harrison.

He told the roundtable: “I’m really concerned about where we are at as an NHS. I think we’re in danger of all sitting around the campfire singing ‘kumbaya’ as the Titanic sinks.

“We are presiding over a failing NHS. There’s no question about it. And if we carry on like this, people have every right to say, ‘what on earth are we spending £150bn on?’”

Read full story (paywalled)

Source: HSJ, 25 July 2022


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