The first request asked them to hand over all communications between the GCC and the ASA.
My second request simply asked:
- Has the GCC commissioned a review of evidence concerning the effectiveness of chiropractic in the treatment of colic or other diseases?
- If so, please provide me with copies of all communications surrounding the commissioning of this review.
- Please provide the final specification detailing how the review is to be performed.
I was obviously interested in how they were planning to perform this review, for instance had they agreed the criteria for inclusion and perhaps more interestingly if there had been an attempt to sway the outcome of the trial during the commissioning phase.
I received a reply from Paul Ghuman the next day confirming receipt and asking me to confirm if my request for communications between the GCC and the ASA related to my complaint made about the GCC’s Patient Information Leaflet. I quickly clarified that this was the case.
It took until the 2nd November until I received a response. They were more than happy to respond to the first request, but the second was completely avoided. They acknowledged that they had commissioned a review, but gave no details.
2. Please note that the current request needs to be defined more clearly in the respect of the information required. For example, it could be that the request is for who approved/agreed the final specification or who made the decision on reviewers. I need more clarification in respect of what information it is that is being requested.Now they could have asked for this on the 7th October when they responded to my first FOIA request. Why did they wait until the 2nd November to ask this question? If I am not being clear enough, that should be obvious enough from the first time they tried to find the information.
I replied to clarify:
To clarify on (2), I assume the GCC has outsourced the evidence review to a scientist, group of scientists, research group or elsewhere. I also assume that in order to find a supplier for the research you may have contacted several organisations/people.
I am looking for copies of all communications to and from those organisations/people that are relevant to the review - both those that were commissioned and those that were considered.
Is that clear? Any questions just ask.Since I replied, now 2½ weeks ago, I have emailed Paul Ghuman to chase up, phoned him twice and left a message and emailed Margaret Coats.
The GCC is acting very much like they’ve got something to hide.