Paterson Inquiry Report released

12 Feb 2020

The UK Government has published an independent inquiry into the malpractice of former plastic surgeon Ian Paterson, who was convicted to 20 years in prison after being found guilty of wounding with intent.

The UK Government has published an independent inquiry into the malpractice of former plastic surgeon Ian Paterson, who was convicted to 20 years in prison after being found guilty of wounding with intent.

Following an investigation into regulations and guidance within the surgical cosmetic aesthetics industry, the report offers recommendations for the future. It suggetss that there should be a single repository of the whole prectice of consultant surgeons across England, setting out their practising privileges and other critical consultant performance data.

Dr Andrew Vallance-Owen, chair of the Private Healthcare Information Network, a collaboration involving almost all independent hospital operators, said, “The Paterson Inquiry report rightly focuses on the impact of Ian Paterson’s premeditated criminality on his patients and their families. This serves as a reminder of why improved reporting and communication that works across both NHS and private healthcare is so important.”

He added, “We must accept that there were system-wide failures which let Ian Paterson take advantage of his patients’ trust. A single repository of whole practice consultant information, available to managers and healthcare professionals will support better clinical governance and help identify patterns of poor care at an earlier stage. It is vital that this is also available to the public in an accessible and understandable way. As such, we welcome this as the first recommendation in the inquiry report.”

Other key recommendations of the inquiry highlight that patients need to be given time to consider surgery before consenting to treatment, clinicians being suspended whenever they are being investigated, patients receiving standard letters with their GPs copied in, and for the Care Quality Commission to check that all hospitals are getting doctors to discuss cases as part of multi-disciplinary team meetings.

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