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Care Quality Commission: Morecambe Bay Hospitals — Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 12:04 pm on 20th June 2013.

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Photo of Earl Howe Earl Howe The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health 12:04 pm, 20th June 2013

My noble friend raises a key issue, which successive Governments have wrestled with. We all know how life works. Whistleblowers are treated badly because their message is often very uncomfortable. That is why local Healthwatch could potentially be a very important part of the puzzle here, by ensuring that people have a place to go to that they can trust and that can raise concerns without necessarily naming the person who has initiated those concerns.

More and more, we need to encourage providers of care to take ownership of their performance. They have to be candid with themselves and accept criticism where it is laid. Boards of directors have to look systematically and regularly at the complaints made against them—whether rightly or wrongly—to make sure that they are as open as possible with themselves. Only by instilling a culture of that kind can we move forward.