NHS whistleblower needs your urgent help for justice & safety

by sharmila chowdhury

NHS whistleblower needs your urgent help for justice & safety

by sharmila chowdhury
sharmila chowdhury
I am a whistleblower who needs funds to enable me to get legal help in order to get justice. This will benefit not just myself but future staff who want to raise concerns and promote patient safety
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£11,905
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sharmila chowdhury
I am a whistleblower who needs funds to enable me to get legal help in order to get justice. This will benefit not just myself but future staff who want to raise concerns and promote patient safety
Pledge now

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Latest: March 21, 2018

The HCA Hospitals lawyers have asked me to clarify certain matters.

The HCA Hospitals lawyers have asked me to clarify certain matters.

This I am happy to do, just in case it was not obvious before.

The facts that I complain about occurred before ...

Read More

My Story

I am an NHS whistleblower who had reported fraud in NHS. I was subsequently dismissed on false counter allegations. I Won an interim relief hearing and appeal but was not allowed back to work. Instead I was made redundant. 

Despite winning the hearing and an apology from the trust, I had problems getting jobs when employers discovered that I was a whistleblower. 

I am raising these funds to support my employment tribunal.

It should not be a crime to speak up and risk losing your career, health, home and reputation  as I  and many other whistleblowers have faced


Current discrimination against staff who raise concerns must change in order to promote transparency in our healthcare and  so promoting  patient safety .

                                 

I had breast and lung cancer. I am on ongoing treatment to prevent any spread of the cancer.

This interview on the Victoria Derbyshire Show summarises my case (click to view):


My case has been widely covered in the media  -  ITV news ,  HSJ,   Channel 5 news  are some of them. Despite this I have not received any redress, and have faced struggle for 8 years.

Struggling to find work, I accepted job at Princess Grace Hospital, part of HCA Healthcare, but ended up with my direct line manager being connected to my previous whistleblowing on fraud. 

During my work at Princess Grace I believe I was victimised for attending my ongoing life-saving treatment for cancer. I also believe I was put through sham performance management in an attempt to get rid of me, which was later dropped by HCA's own legal team. They then decided to make my post redundant. This is despite at other HCA sites there are imaging managers as well as deputy imaging managers in post.I had also raised serious ongoing patient safety concerns internally at Princess Grace. CQC in their recent inspection of Princess Grace issued an improvement notice for safety and being well led.

Why I need help with legal costs

As I was in employment for 18 months, I am not entitled to any redundancy. My case will need to go to an employment tribunal for which I do not have funds. Without any income, I will lose my home with ongoing treatment for cancer. I need this money to fund my case. 

My health has further deteriorated in the last couple of months due to stress.


What will raising funds enable me to achieve?

If successful, this will raise awareness and encourage other staff members to speak up and promote patient safety as whistleblowers will be seen to be protected. This is hugely important in promoting patient safety in all health organisations.

It will also discourage organisations to take on a defensive approach when faced with concerns and encourage them to act on the concerns raised.


The next steps in my case

1. Gathering evidence to bring my case to an employment tribunal

2. Open and transparent sharing of information in public domain

3. Redress for myself after 8 long years of struggle as a whistleblower

4. Turning point for other whistleblowers and employers

5. This, in turn, will protect patients especially the weak and vulnerable who trust staff to speak up when required to keep them safe


Public comments:

'She did the right thing. Reported fraud. Got sacked. Financially ruined. Blacklisted. Breast & lung cancer. Turned away @Jeremy_Hunt Inhuman.'


'It seems to me crime does pay for some ppl and those exposing their crimes are hounded like criminals! The world is mad'


'Fantastic woman, listened to her this morning on the Ritchie Allen show, the scale of corruption is unbelievable but not surprising. We need more people like Sharmila with courage, integrity. Telling the truth today is a revolutionary act, makes me sick what has happened.'

I  really need your support. I cannot do this without you.  Think about what you would want – should you ever be in my shoes or as a vulnerable patient in a hospital. Please help!


For more information on whistleblowing please visit my website: https://sharmilachowdhury.com/

Update 5

sharmila chowdhury

March 21, 2018

The HCA Hospitals lawyers have asked me to clarify certain matters.

The HCA Hospitals lawyers have asked me to clarify certain matters.

This I am happy to do, just in case it was not obvious before.

The facts that I complain about occurred before I was made redundant and was frog marched out of the hospital.

For obvious reasons, because I am no longer working there, I cannot say whether or not those practices continue to this day.

Therefore when I say “serious ongoing patient safety concerns” I meant and mean ongoing up until the time that I left. I hope this clarifies matters.

 

Additionally the HCA lawyers have asked me to give reasons why I honestly believe what I said on  my Crowd Justice page.

I said:

‘My direct line manager being connected to my previous whistleblowing on fraud.’

The facts:

My line manager at Princess Grace was previously employed at Ealing Hospital where I had reported NHS fraud. My line manager at Princess Grace took over the post of my then line manager at Ealing to whom I had reported fraudulent concerns. In other words, they swapped places. I had been adviced by my line manager at Princess Grace, that they remain in regular contact.

I said:

‘During my work at Princess Grace I believe I was victimised for attending my ongoing life-saving treatment for cancer.’

The facts:

I have had breast cancer since 2013. I was advised by my Oncologist to attend for treatment every three weeks. As a result, I attended and still attend every three weeks.

At first, my line manager didn’t say anything to me about these treatments but simply sent me an email stating that the treatment days for cancer treatment, would need to be taken as ‘sick leave’ and that I would not be paid once the number of days reaches a maximum amount of sick leave, i.e. 10 days. I complained about this instruction to a Human Resources advisor. She agreed that this should not have happened.

However, my manager did not stop. Afterwards, I was advised by him  that my treatment days come round “too frequently”. I felt that he was suggesting that I somehow had control over my illness and the frequency of treatment. I am advised that he should have known better than to do this as it is an example of him directly victimising me for having cancer.

I said:

‘I also believe I was put through sham performance management’.

The facts:

Following upon my approach to HR for help with discrimination from my line manager, I was advised by my line manager (the same one who discriminated against me)  that I would face a performance review. This was despite having good appraisals and turning the radiology department from ‘red’ to ‘green’ following a Care Quality Commission inspection.

I honestly believe that the performance management was a sham for the following reasons. My manager listed a long list of performance criteria that he felt that I had failed. Unbeknown to him I had already completed all of them and advised him and HR. A few days later he produced a second set of performance criteria. Again, these too were virtually all completed. I had spoken to the President of Operations for HCA regarding these performances. He advised that he had good reports about me from the previous CEO and I had managed to turn the department around. Therefore I should not be going through a performance review. The performance review was eventually stopped by HCA’s own legal team.

I said:

‘CQC in their recent inspection of Princess Grace issued an improvement notice for safety and being well led.’

The facts:

This can be viewed on CQC’s website as it’s in public domain. CLICK HERE TO VIEW REPORT

It is for these reasons that I believe that the statements I have made on my Crowd Justice page would be the same opinions as an honest 3rd person.

Update 4

sharmila chowdhury

Feb. 22, 2018

HCA have now appointed 3 legal teams against 1 whistleblower with cancer

HCA has threatened me with Defamation proceedings, have reported me to regulators for fitness to practice. Further funds are now needed to defend myself.

Update 3

sharmila chowdhury

Feb. 9, 2018

Funds urgently needed for fighting against defamation, being reported to regulators and for justice

HCA has threatened me with Defamation proceedings and have reported me to regulators for fitness to practice. Further funds are now needed to defend myself.

Update 2

sharmila chowdhury

Feb. 9, 2018

My case is now going to court!

3 months on since redundancy and without any progress on any settlement, on 7 February 2018 Paperwork for tribunal has now been submitted by my legal team.

Update 1

sharmila chowdhury

Jan. 15, 2018

Update on my case

HCA Healthcare have now threatened my future career by suggesting to HCPC – my professional body, that I am not fit to practice. They have also written a threatening letter to me and  have asked me to take this page down. Which I have rightly, refused to do.

Further, HCA have instructed an expensive City Solicitor’s firm (CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro) to threaten me with Defamation proceedings for ‘serious financial loss’ due to what I said about HCA Healthcare on my Crowd Justice page.

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