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ICB whistleblowing process ‘not fit for purpose’

An integrated care board (ICB) has found its handling of whistleblowing “not fit for purpose”, after a complaint about safety incidents not being properly investigated.

A report by North West London ICB, obtained by HSJ, states: “The whistleblowing policy is not fit for purpose and requires immediate updating. The [Freedom to Speak Up] Guardian has been left blank and the policy does not include key components of best practice.”

It also found the “whistleblower should have been provided with a substantive response to their concerns within 28 days” but in fact waited 98 working days, “due to delays with starting the whistleblowing component of the grievance”.

The ICB reviewed its processes after a complaint from a staff member who raised concerns early last year about “a lack of, or poor, response” to reported patient safety incidents in the system, which are meant to be routinely reviewed by ICBs “prior to closure”. 

Read full story (paywalled)

Source: HSJ, 15 February 2024


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