Inquiry behind NHS scandal omitted crucial data – Computer Weekly

Further to my article that showed that the ‘death rate’ at Stafford hospital had been massively exaggerated by unscrupulous media and politicians, and by misguided campaigners, please read this critical addtitional analysis: Inquiry behind NHS scandal omitted crucial data – Public Sector IT.


  1. Well this interesting item seems to be getting out there gradually, in various forms. May turn out to be one of the most significant government/media misuses of data in the history of … er … data! Have you thought of sharing your analysis and the above with Tim Harford’s “More or Less” radio 4 programme? They like mathematical and statistical oddities/counter-intuitive outcomes and misuse of data stories. (PS their item on double-yolked eggs a few months ago was very entertaining).

    1. I don’t know the programme at all, although I’m a regular R4 listener. Maybe you could drop him a line and suggest he contact me? Might carry more weight than me recommending myself!

  2. Fine – will try that. Don’t know if there’s a series on currently but they come round quite often.

    1. Thanks! If it poses any kind of problem I’m happy to do it, but I’ve tended to find more interest from media people whom others have referred to me rather than trying to do it myself.

  3. As if by magic, Brian Jarman is now on R4 saying the government ignored his figures and could have saved more lives. Andy Burnham was on. All repeated the assumed Mid Staffs narrative. Andy Burnham missed a golden opportunity – he said he didn’t order a full public inquiry because he also had a responsibility to help the hospital improve (and by implication the NHS as a whole; and didn’t want a distraction) – AND THEN FAILED TO MENTION THAT MID STAFFS HAS IN FACT IMPROVED TO A VERY GREAT DEGREE! (and also that the government seems to be missing the point of/burying the significant care messages from Francis).

    1. I saw it on the BBC News website this morning. I’ll be writing on it this afternoon as soon as I finish some DIY – I met the ‘Texan coder’ last week so plenty of material to rebut Mr Jarman, and straight from the horse’s mouth, so to speak.

  4. If by the Texan coder you mean the lady who is in trouble with her current employer (New Cross Hospital Wolverhampton) – you no doubt heard her side of the story. I smell a bit of a rat there (they are known to be a very aggressive and predatory Trust and may have encouraged E&Y to think they could do lots of Mid Staffs work if the patients could be beamed there). If she had behaviour problems, how come these did not surface during 3 years at Mid Staffs? People who had dealings with her in MSFT would say she had that rather high level of politeness sometimes associated with our american cousins.

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