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From The Socialist newspaper, 4 March 2008

Rewarded for zeal at cuts

A DEVASTATING outbreak of the 'superbug' clostridium difficile at Stoke Mandeville hospital in Buckinghamshire between 2003 and 2005 killed 33 patients with another 334 patients becoming seriously ill.

A damning report by the Healthcare Commission said that Ruth Harrison, then the 130,000 a year chief executive of Buckinghamshire Hospitals NHS Trust, had compromised the safety of patients by rejecting advice from local experts, and had put reorganising the Trust, new buildings and achieving targets before health issues.

She resigned just before the Commission's findings were announced, and got a 140,000 'golden goodbye'. Her zeal for cuts was recently rewarded further when she won a short-term contract, heading a review into maternity and children's services at Epsom and St Helier hospital in Surrey. This review could lead to ward closures as her similar review in Buckinghamshire did, with cuts coming in later this year.

Bad publicity forced Harrison to step down from the Surrey job, but it went instead to a fellow consultant from the same firm, Durrow, where she is a director!

Harrison's previous high-profile job was managing Kidderminster General Hospital, the downgrading of which led to the election of independent anti-hospital cuts MP Dr Richard Taylor. Health campaigners in Bucks, Surrey and elsewhere should consider standing as pro-NHS candidates in elections in their areas.

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In The Socialist 4 March 2008:

Unite for a living wage

Greenwich workers score victory against single status

Angry civil servants strike over pay


Socialist Party NHS campaign

Thousands protest at threats to hospital

Rewarded for zeal at cuts

Derby health workers


International Women's Day

Fight for a woman's right to choose


Anti-War

DEMONSTRATE

$3 trillion Iraq war

Sheffield activists fight militarism


Environment and socialism

Walthamstow 'RAPpers' against toxic incinerators


Socialist Party news and analysis

Housing association collapses

Meet Brown's new finance expert

Fans blow whistle on Game 39

Campaign to Defeat Fees

Swansea - no sign of Griffin!


International socialist news and analysis

Turkey's invasion destabilising region

Russian election

EU war with super-rich?


Workplace news and analysis

Pensions under attack

Unison witch-hunt: Members bite back

Teachers must reject real pay cuts

Greenwich workers fight attacks

Socialist Party member stands for Unite (T&G) general executive


 

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