16 February 2010
Medical whistleblower will continue to speak out
A medical consultant who was disciplined after blowing the whistle on what he thought were unjustified cuts to services in the hospital he worked in has said he will continue to speak out.
Earlier this month, it was ruled that Ramon Niekrash had only been targeted by bosses after he made disclosures in the public interest, News Shopper reports.
Speaking to the publication, he said, "I've continued to write letters where I feel they should be written."
Mr Niekrash has now been instated as the chairman of the medical staff committee at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital - which is based on Stadium Road in Woolwich.
He went on to say, "The good thing is that the consultants had always supported me as a group. Patients have come into clinics congratulating me."
The medical expert began writing letters to managers in 2005 after discovering that the urology ward was being closed.
The Slater and Gordon employment lawyer who represented Mr Niekrash, said, "The decision to exclude Mr Niekrash was exceptional and unjustified and has had an ongoing adverse impact on his reputation, practice and his health, and we are delighted that the tribunal's judgment reflects this.
"As is acknowledged in the tribunal's judgment, there was tension between the professional desire of consultants such as Dr Niekrash and his consultant colleagues to provide a good quality service for patients, and the requirements of management to reduce costs and also comply with targets set by the Department of Health.
"Unfortunately such tensions manifested to the detriment of Mr Niekrash. In the wake of further cuts to public services including the health service and the likely increase in such tensions, it is hoped that employers will not resort to similar silencing measures against employees who raise legitimate public interest concerns."