Examination of Witness

Part of Health and Care Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 4:00 pm on 9th September 2021.

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Sir Robert Francis:

That rather depends on what arrangements are made in the new system. I have seen no guidance issued yet as to how this should work, and I am not surprised at that, because until you know precisely what the structures are and what the accountability and information flows are, it is quite difficult to do that. But I would agree that it is vital in the ICB and the ICP world that sufficient provisions are made for people who have concerns—whether they be staff, patients or the public—to make those concerns known safely to those responsible for doing something about them. In terms of this new world, that means that the ICB and, I suspect, the ICP need to have people who are directly responsible for that. Unless that happens, whistleblowers are going to find themselves in an even more parlous and uncertain place than they are at the moment.