We are all still reeling from the shock news of Mark Britnell’s sudden departure for pastures more remunerative. Thankfully he has left us with a commissioning sector which no one else in the world can match… and oddly none has sought to do so.
And so we are left pondering how to continue the zeal for private sector involvement in the NHS.
I’m sure there are many approaches and achievements out there that we should be copying, but I can’t find any one FTSE 100 company that can top the NHS surplus. Perhaps what is really happening is the private sector is buying up public sector expertise.
After all, if they now need to know how to turn a profit without a bonus, company jet, box at Chelsea and mistress in Monaco, then the enterprise economy might learn something from the accountable, FOIable, unimaginative, boring old NHS.
I’m not too sure what we can learn from them. There’s BT asking staff to disappear for a while. Not sure that unstaffed wards, clinics and operating theatres would go down too well. And then there’s the world’s favourite airline asking its staff to work for free. We have trouble enough sometimes getting them to work for money, let alone nothing.
So in an era when the private sector has been bailed out by the taxpayer, when risk has been dumped on the Treasury and when the only reason City workers are looking to work in the NHS is that they’ve ruined their sector and want to trash ours, I think we have learned all we need to from the enterprise sector.