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Evidence from scathing report into NMC failings may be made public

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The Council for Healthcare Regulatory Excellence is considering whether to reveal the evidence from its investigation into the NMC, NT has learnt.

A spokesperson for the CHRE said the super-regulator thought releasing the documents might be in the public interest and was consulting with its lawyers on the matter. The CHRE published its damning report on the regulator earlier this month (NT News, 17 June, p3).

The NMC had said it was concerned the report’s findings directly contradicted the CHRE’s own performance assessment in March.

But a CHRE spokesperson last week refuted the claim that any performance assessment was produced by the CHRE at that time.

‘The only assessment was a self-assessment report from the NMC that we accepted early in the investigation process prior to carrying out the full investigation,’ she told NT.

Both the regulator’s president, Nancy Kirkland, and chief executive, Sarah Thewlis, announced their intention to resign last week, though neither set a date. NT understands that Ms Thewlis, who has been chief executive since 2002, will not leave her post until September.

Meanwhile, NMC vice-president and lay member Moi Ali, who raised concerns about the regulator, has refused to resign, despite pressure to do so from health minister Ben Bradshaw. He called for all three senior council members to step down in parliament last week.

But Ms Ali said: ‘I honestly don’t think I have anything to resign over. I believe my own conduct has been exemplary. It has been the hardest thing I have ever done in my life – being the whistleblower is hard. When you’ve done the right thing, why should you resign?’

Livingston MP Jim Devine, whose raising of the allegations about the NMC in parliament sparked the CHRE investigation, defended Ms Ali. ‘It is bitterly disappointing and totally unacceptable and unbelievable that Moi Ali can be seen as the fall guy in this,’ he said.

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