Copies of letters and emails

Dr Colin Iain Campbell MBChB FRSPH made this Freedom of Information request to NHS Improvement

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

Response to this request is long overdue. By law, under all circumstances, NHS Improvement should have responded by now (details). You can complain by requesting an internal review.

Dr Colin Iain Campbell MBChB FRSPH

Dear NHS Improvement,

I am writing to request information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000. I would be interested in any information held by your organisation regarding my request. I understand that I do not have to specify particular files or documents and it is the departments responsibility to provide the information I require. If you need further clarification please contact me via this website (or email). I would like to request the following information:

Between the period of February 2017 until 19th June 2018
1) Copies of letters, emails, and meeting/webinar minutes, please between Martin Inness (NHSI's Senior Operational Agency Data & Intelligence Lead) and companies in the Brookson's group (all group members please e.g. Brookson's Direct, Brookson's One, Brookson's Legal, Brooksons Medical Services LLP, etc).
2) Copies of any emails specifically between Jon Bennet, Brookson's MD and Martin Inness

Specifically please include any emails which are in the deleted messages box in your search as this information is still held.

I would like the information to be provided by email or on this website in electronic form. If my request is denied in whole or in part I ask that you justify all deletions by reference to specific exemptions of the act. I will also expect you to release all non-exempt material. I reserve the right to appeal your decision to withhold any information or to charge excessive fees. I would be grateful if you could confirm in writing that you have received this request. I look forward to your response within 20 working days as outlined by the statute. Many thanks for your assistance with this request.

Yours faithfully,

Dr Colin Iain Campbell MBChB FRSPH

FOI (NHS IMPROVEMENT - T1520), NHS Improvement

Dear Dr Campbell,

 

Receipt of your request for information by email dated 19 June 2018 is
acknowledged.

 

NHS Improvement will respond promptly to your request within 20 working
days following the date of receipt, so by 17 July 2018.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

NHS Improvement

 

Follow us on: [1]Twitter | [2]LinkedIn

 

NHS Improvement is responsible for overseeing foundation trusts, NHS
trusts and independent providers. We offer the support these providers
need to give patients consistently safe, high quality, compassionate care
within local health systems that are financially sustainable. By holding
providers to account and, where necessary, intervening, we help the NHS to
meet its short-term challenges and secure its future.

 

NHS Improvement is the operational name for the organisation that brings
together Monitor, NHS Trust Development Authority, Patient Safety, the
National Reporting and Learning System, the Advancing Change team and the
Intensive Support Teams.

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FOI (NHS IMPROVEMENT - T1520), NHS Improvement

2 Attachments

Dear Dr Campbell,

 

Please see the attached decision letter dated 17 July 2018.

 

Yours sincerely

 

NHS Improvement

T 0203 747 0000
W [1]improvement.nhs.uk
Wellington House, 133-155 Waterloo Road, London SE1 8UG

 

Follow us on: [2]Twitter | [3]LinkedIn

 

NHS Improvement is responsible for overseeing foundation trusts, NHS
trusts and independent providers. We offer the support these providers
need to give patients consistently safe, high quality, compassionate care
within local health systems that are financially sustainable. By holding
providers to account and, where necessary, intervening, we help the NHS to
meet its short-term challenges and secure its future.

 

NHS Improvement is the operational name for the organisation that brings
together Monitor, NHS Trust Development Authority, Patient Safety, the
National Reporting and Learning System, the Advancing Change team and the
Intensive Support Teams.

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Dr Colin Iain Campbell MBChB FRSPH

Dear NHS Improvement,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of NHS Improvement's handling of my FOI request 'Copies of letters and emails'.

We wish an internal review with respect to the information referred to here:

"We consider that the commercial interests of Brookson Direct would be likely to be
prejudiced if we disclose their paper titled “managed services in the NHS” (pages 9 to 12 of
the information annexed"

Many thanks for your response much of which has been extremely helpful.

I note you have attempted to claim a Section 43 exemption. Whilst I note you have not specified which part of section 43 you are claiming an exemption under, which is a requirement, from the written text we suspect this to be Section 43 (1) 'Trade Secrets', although you may be attempting to argue Section 43 (2).

Both of these are subject to a public interest test and we wish you to consider the following public interest representations and, should you still refuse to disclose the information please provide your full reasoning:

PUBLIC INTEREST TEST REPRESENTATIONS, REGARDING INAPPLICABILITY OF FOIA SECTION 43(1) & SECTION 43(2) EXEMPTIONS:

The numerous NHS trusts may be contracting with a non CQC regulated healthcare/medical services provider for the provision of medical/healthcare services to save VAT. Something which appears Martin Innes, whom we understand from industry talk may be leaving your employment to work with the direct engagement firm you have named, may have knowledge of and not have prevented.

As per our understanding, it may be a criminal offence to provide Healthcare/Medical services, as they are set out under Schedule 1 of the Health and Social Care Act 2008, if not CQC regulated and, as such, the public interest in disclosure is overwhelming if a lot of NHS Improvement regulated NHS trusts are contracting with a medical service provider which is not CQC registered (the provider in question supplies you with locum health workers through an umbrella which apparently claims to 'wholly employ' thousands of health workers).

You can confirm lack of CQC registration on the CQC's website: www.cqc.org.uk - select 'all services'

Once you have verified the provider is unregulated, if you are still unsure on the public interest front could you please call the CQC and verify if they need registration due to the nature of their supply or if they do not need registration as they are supplying workers as an agency might.

You can call the CQC on this number to do so: 03000616161 (also available on their website under 'contact us')

Once this public interest basis for review has been confirmed at your side you are free to consider whether to claim an exemption but please provide justification for your answer with reference to the above public interest representations should you choose not to disclose the contract (this is a requirement of claiming such an exemption under the act).

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/c...

Yours faithfully,

Dr Colin Iain Campbell MBChB FRSPH

FOI (NHS IMPROVEMENT - T1520), NHS Improvement

Dear Dr Campbell,

 

We acknowledge receipt of your email dated 2 August 2018 asking for an
internal review.

 

This internal review will be considered as set out in NHS Improvement’s
decision letter. Accordingly, we aim to write to confirm the outcome of
that review within 20 working days of receipt of your email. If for any
reason we are unable to achieve this, we shall inform you of any expected
delay.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

NHS Improvement

 

Follow us on: [1]Twitter | [2]LinkedIn

 

NHS Improvement is responsible for overseeing foundation trusts, NHS
trusts and independent providers. We offer the support these providers
need to give patients consistently safe, high quality, compassionate care
within local health systems that are financially sustainable. By holding
providers to account and, where necessary, intervening, we help the NHS to
meet its short-term challenges and secure its future.

 

NHS Improvement is the operational name for the organisation that brings
together Monitor, NHS Trust Development Authority, Patient Safety, the
National Reporting and Learning System, the Advancing Change team and the
Intensive Support Teams.

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Dr Colin Iain Campbell MBChB FRSPH

Dear FOI (NHS IMPROVEMENT - T1520),

Many thanks.

A small clarification: 'should you choose not to disclose the contract' in the preceding email should read should you choose not to disclose the redacted information.

Yours sincerely,

Dr Colin Iain Campbell MBChB FRSPH

FOI (NHS IMPROVEMENT - T1520), NHS Improvement

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Campbell,

Please see the attached decision letter dated 23 August 2018.

Yours sincerely

NHS Improvement

T 0203 747 0000
W improvement.nhs.uk
Wellington House, 133-155 Waterloo Road, London SE1 8UG

Follow us on: Twitter | LinkedIn

NHS Improvement is responsible for overseeing foundation trusts, NHS trusts and independent providers. We offer the support these providers need to give patients consistently safe, high quality, compassionate care within local health systems that are financially sustainable. By holding providers to account and, where necessary, intervening, we help the NHS to meet its short-term challenges and secure its future.

NHS Improvement is the operational name for the organisation that brings together Monitor, NHS Trust Development Authority, Patient Safety, the National Reporting and Learning System, the Advancing Change team and the Intensive Support Teams.

show quoted sections

Dr Colin Iain Campbell MBChB FRSPH

Dear NHS Improvement,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of NHS Improvement's handling of my FOI request 'Copies of letters and emails'.

In NHS Improvement's previous response to this request you cited Section 41 thereby claiming that this would constitute an actionable breach of confidence, and also your opinion that on the balance of probabilities such action would succeed bearing in mind that the public interest in disclosure is considered by the courts in the course of such cases and that there would need to be clear grounds to bring such action.

For this exemption to be claimable there should be a basis to bring such action against you, in the shape of a non disclosure agreement. However, NHS Improvement has since confirmed that no such agreement would exist. Thus, even if there were not overwhelming pubic interest reasons that such an action would fail in court (and there are) , there is no basis to bring such action and therefore the information should be disclosed.

Please see here for NHS Improvement's confirmation that there is no such non-disclosure agreement in place:

Response:
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/5...

Request page:
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/p...

There is therefore no basis for claiming a section 41 exemption either, there would be no grounds for such an action, and we would request that you honour hour statutory obligations in disclosing the information. I would draw your attention to the public interest representations both in this FOI and the related one seeking to confirm that no confidentiality agreement existed and ask that, in the unlikely event that yet another attempt is made to claim another qualified exemption to avoid disclosure, you disclose public interest reasoning in full as required with respect to the representations given.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/c...

I look forward to your response within the prescribed timeframe and regret that what appears to be obstructive behaviour here has necessitated placing an internal review of this request. I am very grateful for the hard work of the FOI team.

Yours faithfully,

Dr Colin Iain Campbell MBChB FRSPH

Dr Colin Iain Campbell MBChB FRSPH

Dear FOI (NHS IMPROVEMENT - T1520),

Clarification of typo - that no such agreement exists

Yours sincerely,

Dr Colin Iain Campbell MBChB FRSPH

Dr Colin Iain Campbell MBChB FRSPH

Dear FOI (NHS IMPROVEMENT - T1520),

*honour your*

Yours sincerely,

Dr Colin Iain Campbell MBChB FRSPH

FOI (NHS IMPROVEMENT - T1520), NHS Improvement

2 Attachments

Dear Dr Campbell

 

Thank you for your email dated 27 September 2018, where you wrote to NHS
Improvement requesting an internal review of our handling of your FOI
request 'Copies of letters and emails'.

 

We write to advise you that we have already carried out an internal review
of your original FOI request. The outcome of your internal review was sent
to you on 23 August 2018.

 

For your convenience, we have reattached the original FOI response and the
internal review decision letter. As stated in the outcome of your internal
review, If you are not content with the outcome of the internal review,
you have the right to apply directly to the Information Commissioner for a
decision. The Information Commissioner can be contacted at: Information
Commissioner’s Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9
5AF.

 

Yours sincerely

 

NHS Improvement

T 0203 747 0000
W [1]improvement.nhs.uk
Wellington House, 133-155 Waterloo Road, London SE1 8UG

 

Follow us on: [2]Twitter | [3]LinkedIn

 

NHS Improvement is responsible for overseeing foundation trusts, NHS
trusts and independent providers. We offer the support these providers
need to give patients consistently safe, high quality, compassionate care
within local health systems that are financially sustainable. By holding
providers to account and, where necessary, intervening, we help the NHS to
meet its short-term challenges and secure its future.

 

NHS Improvement is the operational name for the organisation that brings
together Monitor, NHS Trust Development Authority, Patient Safety, the
National Reporting and Learning System, the Advancing Change team and the
Intensive Support Teams.

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Dr Colin Iain Campbell MBChB FRSPH

Dear FOI (NHS IMPROVEMENT - T1520),

Your internal review quotes standard lines and does not refer to nor appear to have grasped the point being made namely NHS Improvement has acknowledged that there is no non-disclosure agreement with either the tax avoidance scheme provider, nor the individual who sent the document in question.

A section 41 exemption can ONLY apply where there are grounds for legal action as an actionable breach of confidence. There is no non-disclosure agreement and thus there is *no grounds* for such action - as NHS Improvement has confirmed itself in writing.

Furthermore, even were there such grounds, such a case would not succeed in the absence of such an agreement. Indeed, the public interest would be considered as part of the proceedings and it is overwhelmingly in favour of disclosure (please see the previously provided representations).

You refer to NHS Improvement's opinion of whether it would like organisations to share information in confidence with it - this is NOT grounds for an actionable breach of confidence case against you which would succeed. It has no relevance whatsoever to claiming Section 41 exemptions. You could mount this argument as part of attempting to claim a qualified Section 43 exemption possibly for trade secrets, that said the public interest might well overpower this and you would need to supply your reasoning.

NHS Improvement therefore cannot rely on Section 41 as it is obvious it does not apply here - there is no confidentiality agreement and, since the FOIA came into force, people (including businesses) correspond with public bodies in the knowledge that information may be subject to the Freedom of Information Act 2000 requests and disclosure where an NDA is not employed.

I should further point out that Section 41 does not apply to information which is already accessible in the public domain. The scheme provider in question has very publicly claimed that it uses a VATA 1994 exemption under VAT notice 701/57 for provision of medical services on many occasions. This is already in the public domain. Further the contractual clauses in use in workers contracts with respect to employers' NICs and the apprenticeship levy are also already in the public domain you will be aware that this is a key consideration in Judge Megarry's tests as set out at the High Court of Justice in Coco v A N Clark (Engineers) Limited [1968] FSR 415. ICO guidance directs that this case particularly is of particular authority in considering Section 41 exemptions.

I do worry that this may simply be an attempt to avoid disclosure or giving your opinion on whether the provider is an unregulated healthcare/medical service provider as, on the face of it, it is quite possible that NHS trusts are engaging on industrial scale with a non-CQC regulated healthcare/medical service provider which claims, at least superficially, in order to gain a VAT advantage at least, to 'wholly employ' thousands of doctors and provide care direct to patients.

It will be clear that referring to Judge Megarry's tests (as per Coco v A N Clark (Engineers) Limited 1968), much of the information lacks the necessary quality of confidence as it has passed into the public domain - videos covering the method, numerous FOI responses by NHS trusts, the provider's own website, newspaper articles, articles on ContractorUK and ContractorCalculator, articles on EvolvePolitics - there are numerous, further that there was no obligation of confidence when the documents were received. Also that even if someone were able to bring such action it would not succeed given the public interest representations previously given.

In order to give NHS Improvement the benefit of the doubt that this is oversight rather than deliberately obstructive behaviour to conceal the contents of this scheme, I would like to allow you a further opportunity to reflect on the answer given, which is citing an exemption which clearly cannot apply, before involving the ICO to review your decision making process in concluding that a case where there is no grounds for successful actionable breach of confidence action merits claiming a Section 41 exemption.

Yours sincerely,
Dr Colin Iain Campbell MBChB FRSPH

FOI (NHS IMPROVEMENT - T1520), NHS Improvement

Dear Dr Campbell

 

Thank you for your email dated 28 September 2018.

 

We write to confirm that we have already conducted an internal review into
this decision and are not looking to conduct another review. If you are
not content with the outcome of the internal review,  you have the right
to apply directly to the Information Commissioner for a decision. The
Information Commissioner can be contacted at: Information  Commissioner’s
Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9  5AF.

 

Yours sincerely

 

NHS Improvement

T 0203 747 0000
W [1]improvement.nhs.uk
Wellington House, 133-155 Waterloo Road, London SE1 8UG

 

Follow us on: [2]Twitter | [3]LinkedIn

 

NHS Improvement is responsible for overseeing foundation trusts, NHS
trusts and independent providers. We offer the support these providers
need to give patients consistently safe, high quality, compassionate care
within local health systems that are financially sustainable. By holding
providers to account and, where necessary, intervening, we help the NHS to
meet its short-term challenges and secure its future.

 

NHS Improvement is the operational name for the organisation that brings
together Monitor, NHS Trust Development Authority, Patient Safety, the
National Reporting and Learning System, the Advancing Change team and the
Intensive Support Teams.

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