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Campaigner blasts NHS chiefs over 'gobbledygook' language
CAMPAIGNER Brian Todd has blasted NHS chiefs for using ‘gobbledygook’ language in official NHS documents, saying it prevents the public from understanding key information.
At a formal board meeting of Blackburn with Darwen Clinical Commissioning Group [CCG], the chairman of the borough’s Older People’s Forum berated executives about the repeated use of acronyms and jargon in the agenda papers.
Mr Todd had twice raised the issue, and was told the papers included ‘working documents’ which were ‘not a communication to the public’.
But he responded: “If you’re going to publish a document for the public please make sure these acronyms and jargon phrases are explained somewhere in them.
“You’re not reporting to your colleagues who speak gobbledygook, you are reporting to me and the public.”
The report which angered Mr Todd was written by Dr Malcolm Ridgway, the CCG’s clinical director for quality and effectiveness, who said it was a ‘technical document’ which had been published in the interests of transparency.
And this was defended by Dr Chris Clayton, chief clinical officer, who said: “Malcolm is absolutely right, it’s a technical document put in the public domain for transparency. It’s not a communication to the public.
He said the papers were for a ‘governing body meeting in public’, rather than a public meeting, saying this was a ‘technical but important difference’.
But Mr Todd said after the meeting: “You can’t say you’re being open and transparent and then produce a document without explaining the acronyms.
“I really do not accept their explanation.
“It’s not open if we don’t understand what it means.”
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