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An unusual visit to court

BMJ 2010; 340 doi: (Published 10 March 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;340:c1377

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Improving Trust Efficiency

Waste ! Waste ! Waste !

Let me first congratulate the consultant on winning his case against
his employer. Winning a case always makes you feel good. It is a pity he
did not ask in court the reason for continuing the case after the
employer’s barrister took further instructions as that might have allowed
him to claim his defence costs against his employer on account of
unreasonable behaviour.

I note the author did not have enough confidence in the maturity of
his employer to publicise his name.

Costing the case is easy: four employees and two lawyers for three
hours at a modest £100/hr comes to £1800 for that morning’s exercise. I
think the author should write to his chairman of Board of Governors and
point out that the chairman is under a duty to ensure that Trust funds are
spent wisely and ask him what wisdom there is, in spending £1800 to chase
a return of ten. Even if the Trust had won this, there would be an
unminimisable loss of £1790 and this sort of activity – a certain loss of
£1790, in your opinion is not something your Trust should be undertaking.

All this is tax payers’ money, remember and we don’t have to sit idly
by in an election year and see it squandered.

Oliver Dearlove FRCA

Conficts and declarations: past treasurer of the Royal College of
Anaesthetists, in receipt of a GMC warning, soon to retire, etc etc

Competing interests:
as script

Competing interests: No competing interests

18 March 2010
Oliver R Dearlove
Consultant Anaesthetist
Royal Manchester Children's Hospital