Alan Johnson's attempt to fool the British public into thinking that the tragic deaths at Maidstone & Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust are an isolated case becomes more disingenuous by the day. A new scandal has now emerged at the Royal Blackburn Hospital in Lancashire's neonatal unit. Six babies have tested positive for an aggresive form of MRSA. The hospital covered it up and, as a result, one mother caught the disease from her baby and had to be hospitalised.
The Government's argument that their broader health policy has not failed is also looking increasingly tenuous. Nurse of the Year Justine Whitaker has quit saying:
"Sitting in meetings we are constantly being told 'We're going for this cheaper option with this bandage; we're going for that cheaper option with that dressing; we need to be mindful of resources'.
"I'm absolutely fine with that - I run my household like that - but what I see as a waste of resources is when I'm sitting in a big meeting and as a clinician I am the cheapest person there at £35,000 a year and decisions are still being put off to another meeting."
The lymphoedema nurse, who has 14 years of clinical experience, added: "There is no sign the red-tape is being reduced. It all leads to more bureaucracy, which all leads to more form-filling and paperwork. But as a nurse, I just want to nurse, I want to look after patients. "
The Sun gets it right:
"But Justine is not alone. Top doctors and consultants are also leaving in droves.
They cite the same problems — indecision, waste and non-stop Whitehall meddling.
Despite extra billions, the health service is in crisis."