Above: appearing on ITV Anglia calling for answers on the case
Following disturbing revelations made by a whistle-blower that the deceased body of a constituent had been left next to a rubbish bin in Littleport after paramedics finished their shift, I have been in touch with senior management at the Trust regarding their investigation.
I am told that the investigation will be conducted by Steve Hibbitt, Local Manager for North and Central Cambridgeshire. We still need to know what the investigation’s timeframes are and to ensure that it clarifies whether this was a terrible isolated case or whether there have been other occasions where bodies have been treated without dignity.
Regular readers of this blog will know that the protection of whistle-blowers has been a key focus of mine in Parliament, in particular in the NHS (see my previous blogs on this issue here). I will therefore also be speaking to senior management at the Ambulance Trust to ensure that the whistle-blower who so clearly acted in the public interest is not penalised in any way.
A recent change in legislation brought in by this Government, in part following my campaign on NHS whistle-blowers, is that whistle-blowers can now bring their concerns direct to their MP and be fully protected by whistle-blower legislation. In the past a whistle-blower had to report concerns in the first instance within their own organisation, which often created a conflict of interest, deterring whistle-blowers from reporting to bosses who were implicated in the concerns they were identifying. The changes made to the law in June mean that constituents who contact their MP are now protected and any whistle-blower in the future with concerns is of course welcome to get in touch with me.