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Roy Lilley

Everything you need to know about them...

What would you do with half a million quid?

Buy quite a lot of handbags? Somewhere to live? Jewellery?

There are all manner of drinks and watches and cars and boats. If you are into property, £500k doesn’t go far in London but move to Scotland and you can become a Laird.

You could almost afford an Arsenal season ticket…

Think holidays, clothes and paying off the mortgage. Setting the kids up, a trust for the grandkids. A cruise, a business idea.

Money buys you time to think and the space to breathe.

A villa, clinging to the coast of Amalfi? A race-horse? A light plane?

You can actually buy 22 carat gold-leaf toilet paper. Treat the kids to a skateboard from Louis Vuitton or an iPhone case, encrusted in diamonds. You could invite yer mates around to a few cases of Arctic Nail Ale, made from genuine Arctic ice.

You could pay your gran’s care home fees, put your kids through Uni’ and still have change. There are all manner of things you can do with half a million quid.

You could give it to Marcus Rashford to buy meals for holiday-hungry- kids. Better still, you could give him the money set up a factory making meals for hungry kids. The factory could employ the locals and the supply chain might help revitalise their local economy.

Give it to me and I could help keep the kids in the refugee camp in Rhodes, fed, watered, housed and educated.

Divide £500,000 by £23,000 and that’s how many nurses you could pay for.

  • Spend it foolishly, you could have a blast. 
  • Spend it cleverly, you could do a whole-lotta-good. 
  • Spend it like a numpty and you’ll have a shed-load of people saying ‘what the $@*%….’

If you were Number 18 you’d give it to McKinsey to…

‘… determine the critical capabilities and digital operating model across NHSD, NHSX and NHSEI, needed to drive the digitally enabled wider system transformation envisaged in the NHS long-term plan…’ 

In fact they’ve been given half-a-million to do only part of the work!

Some body called Laura Wade-Gery, is ‘leading the work’.

Ms LWG fits-in by being the chair of NHS’ Digital, Board. She used to work for Marks and Sparks and Tesco and lately, British Land and John Lewis. She’s probably good for a few tickets to the Opera as she is a Trustee of the Royal Opera House.

Quite why she’s spending half a million of your hard-earned is beyond me. She used to be an advisor to the Government Digital Service… don’t ask.

Also ‘don’t ask’ what McKinsey actually did because their role in the review is described in the contract but it is redacted. You pay for it but you can’t read it.

When the HSJ asked them to explain, they said they wouldn’t.

You might remember, in 2018 NHSI paid McKinsey £500,000, to ‘help clarify NHSI's purpose’.

I said the short answer to NHSI’s question was;

'... to find the quickest way to merge with NHSE, stop the cost and confusion of two boards. 

It doesn’t take half-a-million quid to work that out, nor half-a-million brain cells.

As I remember it, No18 bounced NHSX into the picture, so we could ask him how NHSX is supposed to relate to NHSD, where they sit, next to NHSE and how they all make it easier for Mrs England to have an outpatient’s appointment, look after her mum or get a breast-screen.

For Ms LWG’s benefit;

  • NHSE does the work that creates the numbers...
  • NHSD analyse the numbers and tells us how much we’ve done, what worked, so we can ask do we want to keep doing it and...
  • NHSX find ways to make the work quicker, safer, cheaper and easier to count…

… it's called system lifecycle management and all of that can be done within the purview of NHSE, one budget, one board and one person in charge.

If Mrs LWG needs to spend £500,000 to figure that out, someone needs to tell her today is Wednesday, as she may have trouble with that as well.

For two sinecures McKinsey have copped a £million out of the NHS and that says everything you need to know about them...
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