An NHS whistleblower has joined patients’ relatives to call on the boss of Walsall Manor Hospital to resign after inspectors said it should be placed into special measures.
Dr David Drew, who raised concerns over standards of care and was later sacked from the hospital, said Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust chairman Ben Reid had failed to address problems.
Dr Drew said: “Concerns the Care Quality Commission highlights are a heavy-handed management style, poor leadership, and not taking note of staff concerns.
“These are exactly the issues I was raising with the trust more than five years ago and nothing has changed. Serious questions have to be asked why the chairman has made no impression in this time.
“The last trust board meeting I attended in 2014 left me believing this was a board that could never make things work. There needs to be new blood to deal with the heavy-handed middle managers.”
The trust is set to be placed into special measures after it was rated as ‘inadequate’. The CQC report published yesterday said bosses had no plan how to recover from its £12 million deficit and there was a heavy-handed approach bordering on a bullying culture from senior management and, in some cases, at board management level. It also said hospital bosses failed to appreciate the level of risk patients were put at.
Calls for Mr Reid, who is chief executive of The Mid Counties Co-operative, to resign have also been backed by Chirs Humpage, whose mother Audrey died aged 70 after being misdiagnosed with cancer.
Mr Humpage said: “I am not surprised it has gone into special measures, but I am surprised to see this sort of action from the CQC.
“I think it is justified having experienced what we did and the number of other cases we have heard of. It is now time for Ben Reid to resign – we as a family found his approach completely inappropriate. Something needs to be done. There are many things going wrong at the hospital. Parts of it are very bad.”
Tracey Ankrett, whose son Mark died at the hospital in 2013, repeatedly raised concerns about his care.
She said: “I am relieved it has been put into special measures because it is about time. But I am also angry it has taken this long. A previous report found problems with note taking – something that was a concern I raised with my son.
“Had something been done then, it may have saved a lot of suffering.”
Mr Reid said: “The CQC rating affects all of us associated with the trust and our task is now to step up the progress made so far so that the significant changes that are needed happen as quickly as possible.”