Blame is like tax: imposed on some, avoided by others.
The BMA has successfully sued me for £200K plus the same in costs, for reporting unaddressed safety concerns to Dr Phil Hammond of Private Eye.
It’s picked on the fact that I didn’t dare out myself as a potential source when first challenged, and its lawyers have turned this into a breach of contract and misrepresentation.
Doing this, the BMA’s shown again how the NHS blame culture works, and for BME doctors in particular. It’s argued that the context in which I acted to raise concerns, and the concerns themselves are irrelevant. So the fact that I had a well founded fear of reprisal when reporting misconduct by powerful BMA members at Alder Hey – that’s irrelevant. The fact that I’d done the right thing, and escalated my concerns to regulators that failed to act – that’s irrelevant. The fact that children have been seriously harmed and even Parliament has been deliberately misled on this – that’s also irrelevant. The blame is all mine – for sticking by my concerns – and escalating them to Dr Phil Hammond.
At the same time, it’s a different story for those non-BME doctors on whom I blew the whistle. For some, their negligence has been quietly paid off by the NHS, protecting their merit awards and their identity. For another, his surreptitious alteration of GMC evidence – and falsehoods about this when caught – has been judiciously suppressed. For two, their failure to disclose their claims against Mr Ahmed’s mental health, to internal investigations or his employment tribunal, has been gently shelved [the Trust admitted on oath it’s never even investigated their conduct in this]. And what of the BMA, when its members came to oppose each other at Alder Hey? My own senior BMA representative anxiously contacted my lawyers seeking to assuage concerns pre-trial – but on behalf of my non-BME opponents, rather than seeking to press any advantage for me.
The BMA say it sued me for its funds. That’s untrue – it’s known all along I can’t pay. It’s embarrassed about its business model being exposed. It’s been shown up for arranging pay offs, brokering those deals from both sides of the negotiation; and cementing them with gagging that publicly it denies, but privately its own lawyer admits is “common” – even in whistleblowing cases.
Dr Ed Jesudason