NHS kitchen vermin

It takes a newspaper to alert the NHS to this disgrace??

HOSPITAL kitchens across Britain are infested with rats, mice and cockroaches, a Sun probe discovered.

Staff are poorly trained and basic health and hygiene procedures are regularly ignored. We also found that in the last 18 months hospitals have been:

-DISHING up meals contaminated with deadly bacteria and

-REGULARLY serving out-of-date food.

Environmental health officers found 541 out of 731 kitchens probed were breaking hygiene rules.

A total of 227 — almost one in three — were dirty while 57 stocked out-of-date food.

Council officers at West Park Hospital, Wolverhampton, found a rat rotting in a cupboard near to the kitchen. They also spotted a food handler wiping their nose in a “high risk” area.

Ten NHS hospitals inspected had cockroaches in the kitchens and four had rats or mice scampering near food preparation areas.

At Lewisham Hospital, South East London, inspectors found “widespread mouse activity” and cockroaches breeding.

At Sandwell General Hospital. West Bromwich, sandwiches contaminated with deadly listeria were served while at Rochdale Infirmary warm pre-packed sandwiches were given to vulnerable patients.

Shadow health secretary Andy Burnham said last night: “Hospitals are struggling to cope as the Government wastes billions on a back-office reshuffle. “The Health Secretary must order an urgent investigation.”

One million hospital meals are served every day and lapses in hygiene contribute to 300,000 infections a year. Health inspectors found many kitchens were manned by untrained staff. They saw workers eating while preparing meals and not washing their hands after breaks.

At Petersfield Hospital, Hants, an officer saw “something move and go under the fryers” only to be told it was “a loose grape”.

At Queen Mary’s, Sidcup, Kent, they found mouldy chopping boards and knives put away dirty. There was also a “serious cockroach infestation in the undercroft.”

Even the top hospitals were not immune. Christie’s in Manchester had frozen meals eight months old. They should only be kept for three. St Bart’s in London had rat and mouse droppings in the kitchens and reports of cockroaches.

Also in the capital, cockroaches were a problem in the kitchens at Moorfields Eye Hospital and Chelsea and Westminster hospital.

Roger Goss, co-director of health watchdog Patient Concern, said our findings made him feel ill.

He added: “It’s outrageous. If these were restaurants they’d be put out of business and the owners would be put in court.” Health Minister Simon Burns said: “This is totally unacceptable. A modern NHS should not be putting patients at risk by failing to meet basic hygiene standards. “We expect local authorities to take tough action where serious failures are identified.”

All hospitals contacted by The Sun said they had immediately complied with instructions to put kitchens in order.

Lewisham NHS said: “We took urgent action to deal with pest control.”

Sandwell said an independent probe after a “positive result for a listeria species” did not reveal “any issues relating to food preparation.” Bosses at Royal Wolverhampton called the dead rat “an isolated incident”.

Queen Mary’s Hospital said cleaning issues had been resolved while Christie’s said inspectors had given guidance on frozen food storage.

Rochdale Infirmary said problems over sandwiches had been resolved and Petersfield Hospital said a recent inspection found kitchen standards “excellent”.

Bart’s said it had recently been awarded the best-possible rating while Chelsea and Westminster said a new inspection praised its hygiene.


We won’t shut the door on migrants fleeing eurozone, says British Liberal leader

Nick Clegg yesterday denied that Britain is planning to ‘pull up the drawbridge’ to prevent an influx of foreign workers from crisis-hit eurozone nations.

The Deputy Prime Minister hit out at ‘apocalyptic’ warnings that Britain could be hit by a wave of immigrants from Greece and other struggling countries if the euro crisis deepens.

His intervention came after Theresa May disclosed contingency planning was under way to deal with a potential influx of would-be immigrants.   Reports said the Home Secretary was considering using emergency powers to bypass European single market rules and effectively seal the border.

There are fears that Greece in particular could leave the euro and go bankrupt, causing millions of Greeks to lose their jobs and look for work abroad.

But Mr Clegg claimed yesterday she had only been talking about ‘keeping an eye on migration patterns’.  ‘I really do think some of the breathless talk in the media about “Do we pull up the drawbridge to stop hordes of people migrating across Europe?” is both far-fetched, somewhat apocalyptic in tone and deeply unhelpful,’ he told the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show.  ‘We are not there yet,’ he added.

Mr Clegg warned last week that allowing Greece to leave the euro could unleash ‘unpredictable, irrevocable damage’ to the entire European economy.   Yesterday he repeated his call for European leaders to come together to shore up the  single currency.

He insisted his comments were not an attack on Mrs  May, saying it was ‘quite sensible’ for the Home Office  to keep contingency plans under review.

In an interview at the weekend, Mrs May said that ‘work is ongoing’ to deal with large movements of people in the event of the break-up of the single currency, although she did not indicate the exact response that was under consideration.

In normal circumstances the Government’s hands are tied because EU nationals are largely entitled to live and  work anywhere in the single market.  But she said the Government was ‘looking at the trends’ on immigration from struggling European economies.  She said there was no evidence of increased migration at present, but said it was ‘difficult to say how it is going to develop in coming weeks’.

Mrs May suggested that the ‘abuse’ of freedom of movement within the EU more generally was an issue that was under consideration.  She said: ‘Discussions within the EU are much more looking at the immigration issue, the migration issue, as something that needs to be considered and addressed.  Within the EU, in a wider context, people are increasingly recognising the need to prevent the abuse of free movement.’

Labour MP Keith Vaz, chairman of the Home Affairs select committee, said moves to curb immigration from within the EU were ‘fraught with dangers’.  He said: ‘Firstly, the Government has always maintained that they could never do anything about EU migration as it was illegal to do so. 

‘The statement [from Mrs May] is concerning, considering that the Home Office’s record of acting on legal advice has not been brilliant.  ‘Secondly, the Home Secretary is suggesting a short-term fix, whereas the eurozone crisis will be long-term and involve several countries.

‘Finally, she will cause unnecessary panic as people in Greece seek to move to the UK before any new measures are put in place. This risks causing chaos at the borders just before and during the Olympics. ‘The Home Secretary should choose her words and the methods of announcing changes much more carefully in future.’


Coexisting with Sharia

You have probably seen the “coexist” bumper sticker. It implies that we should all just try harder to get along. Wherever we turn, it seems, we are assured that efforts to embrace differences will result only in harmony, although the bargain often entails that we abandon our core cultural principles and our Western soul. For too long we have failed to comprehend that the cost of coexistence can be high.

Finally, though, the pursuit of tolerance at any price is being assessed realistically. The British have now been forced to confront – and finally judge – the actions of some minority Muslims who have embedded themselves in a counterculture hostile to British society. Forty-nine men, predominantly from Pakistan, were convicted (or are still wanted) for luring 47 underage British girls to lairs for serial rape. At least one victim was forced to have sex with 20 men in one night, according to the police. Two girls became pregnant and a 13-year-old reported aborting a baby conceived by rape. Nine of the Muslim men were found guilty last week. Authorities expect to charge four more, and up to 40 additional suspects remain at large.

Judge Gerald Clinton accused the predators of targeting white girls because they were not part of the Islamist “community or religion.” The ringleader was removed from the courtroom for being disrespectful of the judge and the legal process.

 It is even more shocking to consider that this is just the most recent case. For years British police failed to make arrests for fear of being called racist, even though girls were reporting the rape rings. Both MP Simon Danczuk and former MP Ann Cryer have charged the police with dereliction due to political correctness.

While some will wonder what it was about coexistence that these Muslim men did not understand, others will realize a hard truth. These girls were the prey of men whose very definition of womanhood is distorted. For these Muslims, women are defined according to a man’s needs and his status in the clerical community.

What Westerners have understood as an Islamist honor code is really better described as a culture based on shame. Muslim men are rated according to how their women conform – to how observantly they dress and and how obsequiously they obey clerical dictates. Ayaan Hirsi Ali, a former Muslim and now an activist in the cause of abused women, has tried to explain for uncomprehending Westerners this endemic mindset: “In most of the shame cultures, people in the system don’t necessarily know that this abuse is wrong.”

The question that Europeans and Americans now must answer is why such a culture has been accommodated to the point that the rule of law is breaking down. The noble goal of tolerating cultural difference has long covered neglect of the need to define legal and constitutional standards. The principles of individual liberty, self-determination, and equal rights undergird our social compact and must not be compromised for the purpose of negotiating coexistence with a subversive and implacable counterculture.


New Study from U.K. Think Tank Shows How Big Government Undermines Prosperity

Daniel J. Mitchell

It seems I was put on the planet to educate people about the negative economic impact of excessive government. Though I must be doing a bad job because the burden of the public sector keeps rising.

But hope springs eternal. To help make the case, I’ve cited research from international bureaucracies such as the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, International Monetary Fund, World Bank, and European Central Bank. And since most of those organizations lean to the left, these results should be particularly persuasive.

I’ve also cited the work of academic scholars from all over the world, including the United States, Australia, and Sweden. The evidence is very persuasive that big government is associated with weaker economic performance.

Now we have some new research from the United Kingdom. The Centre for Policy Studies has released a new study, authored by Ryan Bourne and Thomas Oechsle, examining the relationship between economic growth and the size of the public sector.

The chart compares growth rates for nations with big governments and small governments over the past two decades. The difference is significant, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg. The most important findings of the report are the estimates showing how more spending and more taxes are associated with weaker performance.

Here are some key passages from the study.

Using tax to GDP and spending to GDP ratios as a proxy for size of government, regression analysis can be used to estimate the effect of government size on GDP growth in a set of countries defined as advanced by the IMF between 1965 and 2010.

…As supply-side economists would expect, the coefficients on the tax revenue to GDP and government spending to GDP ratios are negative and statistically significant. This suggests that, ceteris paribus, a larger tax burden results in a slower annual growth of real GDP per capita. Though it is unlikely that this effect would be linear (we might expect the effect to be larger for countries with huge tax burdens), the regressions suggest that an increase in the tax revenue to GDP ratio by 10 percentage points will, if the other variables do not change, lead to a decrease in the rate of economic growth per capita by 1.2 percentage points.

The result is very similar for government outlays to GDP, where an increase by 10 percentage points is associated with a fall in the economic growth rate of 1.1 percentage points. This is in line with other findings in the academic literature.

…The two small government economies with the lowest marginal tax rates, Singapore and Hong Kong, were also those which experienced the fastest average real GDP growth.

The folks at CPS also put together a short video to describe the results. It’s very well done, though I’m not a big fan of the argument near then end that faster growth is a good thing because it generates more tax revenue to finance more government. Since I’m a big proponent of the Laffer Curve, I don’t disagree with the premise, but I would argue that additional revenues should be used to finance lower tax rates.

Since I’m nit-picking, I’ll also say that the study should have emphasized that government spending is bad for growth because it inevitably and necessarily leads to the inefficient allocation of resources, and that would be true even if revenues magically floated down from heaven and there was no need for punitive tax rates.

More HERE (See the original for links and graphics)

Google chairman: Britain must improve maths skills

Britain must change its poor attitude towards maths or risk becoming a “dusty museum to the past”, the executive chairman of Google has claimed.

Eric Schmidt, one of the internet’s most powerful figures, said Britain must place more value on the teaching of maths in schools or risk falling behind rapidly growing Asian competitors in future.

People with no maths skills will also be left behind in future job markets where all of the highest-paid jobs will demand some level of numerical ability, he added.

Speaking at Google’s Zeitgeist conference in Hertfordshire last week Mr Schmidt, 57, lent his backing to the Telegraph’s Make Britain Count campaign, claiming “cultural prejudices” are responsible for the country’s low mathematical ability.

His comments came after Ofsted announced this week that British children’s poor numeracy is a “cause of national concern” with almost half of all schools failing to teach the subject to an adequate standard.

He said: “I believe it is possible to change cultural prejudices and biases within this country, and for the British people to say, “We want to be the best in the world at maths. To have that sort of Russian national excellence at mathematics, without some of the other aspects of Russia.

“Like it or not, this is a competitive world, and if you look at the Asian model, they are producing more science, engineering and mathematics graduates than Europe, and their economies are growing faster.

“You have to ask yourself this question. Is your vision for Britain a dusty museum to the past, or a powerhouse with a great future? Right now, maths may not be fashionable, but it may well turn out to be necessary.”


About jonjayray

I am former member of the Australia-Soviet Friendship Society, former anarcho-capitalist and former member of the British Conservative party. The kneejerk response of the Green/Left to people who challenge them is to say that the challenger is in the pay of "Big Oil", "Big Business", "Big Pharma", "Exxon-Mobil", "The Pioneer Fund" or some other entity that they see, in their childish way, as a boogeyman. So I think it might be useful for me to point out that I have NEVER received one cent from anybody by way of support for what I write. As a retired person, I live entirely on my own investments. I do not work for anybody and I am not beholden to anybody
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