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Andrew Lansley voted worst Health Secretary


18 December 2014

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Andrew Lansley has been named the worst health secretary by leading doctors.

In a survey, published in the BMJ, of the UKs top 50 doctors – including the presidents of the Royal Colleges – 15 believed that Andrew Lansley should win the title.

Of the other health secretaries named – including Enoch Powell, Kenneth Clarke and Jeremy Hunt – no-one else had more than a single vote.

Aneurin Bevin topped the poll for the best health secretary winning 20 out of 50 votes with Frank Dobson receiving nine.

Andrew Lansley has been named the worst health secretary by leading doctors.

In a survey, published in the BMJ, of the UKs top 50 doctors – including the presidents of the Royal Colleges – 15 believed that Andrew Lansley should win the title.

Of the other health secretaries named – including Enoch Powell, Kenneth Clarke and Jeremy Hunt – no-one else had more than a single vote.

Aneurin Bevin topped the poll for the best health secretary winning 20 out of 50 votes with Frank Dobson receiving nine.

Respondants were also asked questions regarding their childhood ambitions – 12 had always wanted to work as doctors and five had always wanted to be scientists – and whether they agreed with assisted suicide. The panel was split with 24 in favour and 15 against and the remainder abstained.

The worst mistakes (that they were prepared to admit to) fell into two groups: medical errors (wrong prescriptions, bad diagnoses, inept treatments) and what might be called career errors (failing to apply for jobs, taking a wrong turn, or in one case, failing to turn over an exam paper and missing the questions on the back). One doctor admitted to sewing up an episiotomy by following instructions given over the phone, although he had never done one before.

The interviewees, who also included four health tsars (national clinical directors), named their pet hates as lying, obvious answers, experts, risk averse bureaucracy, bullies, litter, worthiness, men who struggle to hear women, arrogance, self pity and tinned tomatoes to name a few.

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