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MTAS: Doctors want Hewitt to go

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Hold up! Before you read on, please read this...

This post was published more than 13 years ago

I keep old posts on the site because I often enjoy reading old content on other people's sites. It can be interesting to see how views have changed over time: for example, how my strident teenage views have, to put it mildly, mellowed.

I'm not a believer in brushing the past under the carpet. I've written some offensive rubbish on here in the past: deleting it and pretending it never happened doesn't change that. I hope that stumbling across something that's 13 years old won't offend anyone anew, because I hope that people can understand that what I thought and felt and wrote about then is probably very different to what I think and feel and write about now. It's a relic of an (albeit recent) bygone era.

So, given the age of this post, please bear in mind:

  • My views may well have changed in the last 13 years. I have written some very silly things over the years, many of which I find utterly cringeworthy today.
  • This post might use words or language in ways which I would now consider highly inappropriate, offensive, embarrassing, or all three.
  • Factual information might be outdated.
  • Links might be broken, and embedded material might not appear properly.

Okay. Consider yourself duly warned. Read on...

Patricia HewittThere’s a danger of this turning into the MTAS blog at the moment, but I can’t hide my incredulity at the complete and utter failure MTAS has been.

Now it emerges that Patricia Hewitt was told about the problems with MTAS security (covered here and here) by the British Orthopaedics Trainees Association a month ago, yet chose to do absolutely nothing about it. She knew that intimate details about doctors’ personal lives could be viewed by others, and even modified by them, and yet chose to take no action. If that doesn’t make her personally liable for prosecution under the Data Protection Act, I’m not sure what would.

Lord Hunt has confirmed today that the MTAS system is down, and he’s no idea when it will be back up. Until then, doctors will be missing interviews, because there is no mechanism in place to communicate the times and dates of these interviews to them. And he refuses to guarantee that the process of matching doctors to jobs will be completed by the August deadline. What he plans to do if it’s not is a mystery: Leave doctors without jobs and hospitals without doctors?

Patricia Hewitt has agreed to appear on Channel 4 News next week. Other than resigning live on air, I’m not sure what she can say or do to make up for this absolute shambles. Junior doctors have today voted for her to go, and I don’t know if she can survive the pressure long enough to go when Blair goes, as she inevitably will. It’s just a shame that won’t fix the problem.

This 1,110th post was filed under: Health, News and Comment, Politics.

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Comments and responses

Comment from Dr Grumble


    14.38, 29/04/2007

Kinesh Patel in a wonderfully amusing talk explained the security weaknesses of MTAS to those in charge way back in February. One of his slides was as follows:

Security

-Complete lack of!

They did not take any of what he said seriously.




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