Croydon PCT £22m blackhole under fresh scrutiny

Dr Peter Brambleby

Dr Peter Brambleby

First published in News Croydon Guardian: Photograph of the Author by , Assistant Editor

A committee investigating how a £22m blackhole went undetected at Croydon Primary Care Trust will call the whistleblower who first highlighted the problem as its first witness.

Councillors from five local authorities including Croydon have combined to form the South West London Joint Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee which will question how the financial mess occurred.

The group will also look at how a report into the incident blamed systems failures rather than placing any individual blame before reporting back in December.

At a meeting on Monday, September 24, the committee will hear the evidence of Dr Peter Brambleby, who was Croydon’s director of public health from March 2010 to February 2012.

On July 6 he blew the whistle on NHS London’s decision to try to hide the deficit as a “prior period adjustment” which, despite Dr Brambleby’s revelation, the South West London Cluster tried to repeat on July 26.

Councillor Jason Cummings, who was appointed committee chairman at the first meeting on September 6, said: “Probing into the Ernst and Young report on the irregularities, people were surprised that no one was apportioned blame and instead system errors were pointed at.

“Our main concern is with all the changes taking place within the health service ensuring this does not happen again.”

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