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CNO spends £1m on consultants


The chief nursing officer spent nearly £1million on consultants last year, according to data from the Department of Health.

Nursing Times’ analysed details of all spending over £25,000 by the DH for the year to March 2011, published as part of the government’s transparency agenda. The analysis reveals a total of £36.8m of spending attributed to Dame Christine Beasley’s office.

The CNO’s directorate spent £590,000 with PA Consulting, which received just under £3m in total from the department. Dame Christine’s office spent £215,000 with Frontline Consultants Ltd in the year.

The majority of money spent by the CNO was in grants to non-profit organisations and public bodies. For example, Acorns Hospice Trust received £2.9m from Dame Christine’s office. The office spent over £700,000 on “printing” — primarily with the Central Office of Information, part of the cabinet office. Meanwhile, the office of NHS medical director Sir Bruce Keogh spent more than £1.5m on consulting in the year.

The data, which may not include all items of spending, shows that the department as a whole spent at least £65m on consultants. It also shows the DH paid almost £250,000 to the Nursing and Midwifery Council and total of £139,000 to the Royal College of Nursing in the year. The DH spent £326m on “outsourcing” and £5m on legal fees during the year.


Readers' comments (25)

  • AAAAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  • And this week's scapegoat is............ The CNO!

    Tune in next week to see who has the entourage of flaming torches and pitchforks. Will it be that old standard - the inept agency nurse or is it time for Mid-Staffs to take centre stage again? Tune in next week for the next thrilling instalment of Britains Got Excuses!

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  • Anonymous | 7-Jun-2011 8:20 am to be fair, the CNO is hardly a scapegoat here. This has been the status quo for a fair while now and the woman is simply pontificating about with her fancy title, spending vast amounts of money, having nice little 'meetings' and giving the profession absolutely NO leadership whatsoever in return.

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  • The poor midwives in our trust are so overworked because of staff shortages (vacant posts not being filled). I don't know how this woman sleeps at night.

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  • I don't know about scapegoat - she certainly needs to be made an example of. Leadership? B*****ks!

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  • @ mike from Anonymous 0820.

    Just for a second I thought you were leaping to the Dame's Defence!!!

    You'd hope that someone with her experience and network of contacts would have most of the answers at her fingertips really.

    I have contacts in other Trusts as we work towards solving problems locally, so we make the best use of evidence based practice. Not one of the people I have been in touch with has ever asked for remuneration for their services so I'm hard pushed to see what value for money the CNO has had from these consultants.

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  • Anonymous | 7-Jun-2011 2:56 pm not a bloody chance! I could never defend the actions or leadership of this woman!

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  • I love it that everyone seems to be a "consultant" nowadays. The RCN, along with all Trusts, will have an army of people who will have masters degrees in business management and the like, yet when someone is needed to perform a task which involves this type of knowledge, they have to get in "consultants" who charge exorbitant rates. What is needed is people with common sense...look to the people you are meant to represent Dame Christine. There is a wealth of experience and knowledge there.

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  • Shameful!! The woman should be held to account! She is a waste of space and obviously, a waste of money.

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  • A voluntary male patient dies at the door of the ward while nurses and nurse managers walk over him. Presumably this was part of his care plan, risk assessed and had his full agreement. OH! hang on he was a "drug user", e.g. anti-psychotics, alcohol and other drugs, only we don't know because the nursing staff didn't check. If that was Christine Beasley or one of her consultants the situation would be different. Not fit for purpose, any of them!

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