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NHS staff cheat to hit government targets, MPs say

BMJ 2003; 327 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.327.7408.179 (Published 24 July 2003) Cite this as: BMJ 2003;327:179
  1. Anne Gulland
  1. London

    NHS staff are cheating to hit the government's targets, a report by an influential committee of MPs has said.

    A report by the public administration select committee, On Target? Government by Measurement, has revealed allegations of cheating, perverse consequences, and distortions in pursuit of targets.

    Accident and emergency (A&E) departments were “prone to creative accounting,” the report said. The BMA, the Royal College of Nursing, and the Patients Association told the committee how “targets for A&E maximum waiting times were being circumvented by imaginative fixes where trolleys either had their wheels …

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