Wrong priorities

Published on 26 April 2013


You have reported on the rejection by surgeons at Gartnavel of suspect instruments and on the bland assurances of the First Minister that the incident is a triumph for the patient safety guarantee, rather than a deplorable lack of quality control in state-of-the-art scullery system at Cowlairs (“NHS operations delayed again”, The Herald, March 29).

Earlier this month the clinical director of the Scottish Government’s Quality Unit told an infection control conference the incident was “actually quite a good story,” since it showed the Patient Safety Programme was working.

To quote a recommendation of Robert Francis QC of the Staffordshire inquiry, under the heading of responsibility for regulating and monitoring compliance: “It requires a focus on what is wrong, not on praising what is right”.