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The public enquiry into the Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust, chaired by Robert Francis QC, completed its 37th week last December. It was an important phase for this long running and complex investigation as closing submissions were submitted to the chairman [sic] by the counsel to the enquiry, Tom Kark QC.1
In case you need reminding, the enquiry is examining ‘the commissioning, supervisory and regulatory organisations in relation to their monitoring role at Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust between January 2005 and March 2009… it will look at why the serious problems at the Trust were not identified and acted on sooner, to identify important lessons to be learnt for the future of patient care’. It is different to an earlier independent enquiry in that this one is set up under the Enquiries Act 2005 whereas the first one was set up under the NHS Act 2006.
By the time this editorial is published the enquiry's final report may be available. …
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