Friday, 4 November 2016

The future of East Devon's hospitals >>> campaigning to keep - and expand funding

On Monday, there will be an opportunity to take part in the public consultation on the future of hospital services in Devon:
Futures Forum: The future of Sidmouth's hospital >>> protesting at the NHS public consultation on Monday 7th Nov
Futures Forum: The future of East Devon's hospitals >>> Meeting to consult on bed closures: Monday 7th November in Sidmouth >>> Demonstation: Tuesday 8th November in Exeter

The Herald lets us know today that places for the event are being booked up very quickly:

Register to have your say on plans to cut community hospital beds in East Devon

09:36 03 November 2016

Sidmouth Victoria Hospital Ref shs 3264-50-14AW. Picture: Alex Walton.

Health bosses say spaces are filling up fast and are urging people to secure a place at public meetings
Residents are being urged to secure a chance to have their say on plans to cut hospital beds in East Devon.
Health bosses say a series of consultation events on plans that would see Sidmouth lose its 24 inpatient beds are fast filling up - but have promised that if demand proves too high, they will host additional meetings.
The first public talks held by the NHS Northern, Eastern and Western Devon Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) will take place at The Knowle in Sidmouth on Monday, November 7, at 1pm to 3.30pm and 5.30pm to 8pm.
There are four options on the table and two of them, including the preferred choice, would see Sidmouth Victoria Hospital lose all of its inpatient beds. The public is being asked to determine where the remaining beds should be located.
The CCG says the changes will enable a move away from hospitals to a home-based model of care and would help plug a £384million funding deficit by 2010/21.
But campaigners argue the proposals are ‘flawed’ and are urging people to fight against any bed cuts.
The CCG says people need to register to guarantee a place.
To register, call 01392 356084 or email d-ccg.YourFutureCare@nhs.net.
The consultation document is available online at www.newdevonccg.nhs.uk.
Paper consultation forms can be picked up from Sidmouth’s hospital, library, leisure centre, town council offices and pharmacies.
The following public consultation events are being held:
• Knowle, Sidmouth: November 7, 1pm to 3.30pm and 5.30pm to 8pm.
• Ocean, Queens Drive, in Exmouth: November 8, 1.30pm to 4pm.
• Exmouth Community College: November 22, 5.30pm to 8pm.
• The Beehive, Honiton: November 10, 10am to 12.30pm.
• Whipton Community Hall: Exeter, November 18, 2.30pm to 5pm.
• St Luke’s College, Exeter: November 21, 6pm to 8pm.
• Seaton Town Hall, November 24: 2pm to 4.30pm and 5.30pm to 8pm.
• The Beehive, Honiton: November 29, 12pm to 2.30pm.

Register to have your say on plans to cut community hospital beds in East Devon - Home - Sidmouth Herald

Meanwhile, the county's MPs have been making a point in Parliament:
Futures Forum: The NHS and 'sloganising' in Devon >>> and meanwhile, the 'Success Regime' claims that hospital beds are "unused" and care at home is "more efficient"...
Futures Forum: Hospital beds and social care: "The NHS will not be able to care properly for the growing population of frail older people unless the availability of social care increases in line with rising need." 

The MP for Totnes and chair of the Health Select Committee is also urging for action to be taken:
Devon MP Sarah Wollaston attacks ministers over NHS cash claims | Plymouth Herald
£10 billion extra funding to the NHS government claim is incorrect, says Dr Sarah Wollaston | Torquay Herald Express
NHS spending will be 'considerably less' than Government claims says Tory head of health committee - ITV News
No 10 insists there WILL be a £10bn boost for the NHS | Daily Mail Online 

And the context is made clear by the national press: A&Es are refusing to take patients parked outside in ambulances | Daily Mail Online
Almost half of NHS authorities to cut hospital beds and third to close A&E - Telegraph

The Ottery Councillor and member of the County's health committee has written to East Devon's MP:

Hugo Swire please back Sarah Wollaston and urge chancellor for more NHS and social care funding

Thursday, 03 November 2016 1 Comment by Claire
My email to Hugo Swire ......
Dear Hugo
Firstly, thank you for organising the parliamentary debate on community hospital bed losses a couple of weeks ago. It was good to see local MPs batting for public services and for Devon residents.
You may have seen the media coverage of Sarah Wollaston’s health select committee findings concerning the £10bn that the government claims it is ploughing into the health service.
Dr Wollaston’s committee has found that government ministers altered the definition of what constitutes health spending in order to give an inflated figure.
The actual sum is thought to be in the region of around £4bn.
In addition, NHS growth funding has dropped from six per cent a few years ago to a flatline, while costs and demand continue to rise dramatically.
Dr Wollaston has now urged chancellor, Philip Hammond to provide more funding for health services in the autumn statement.
This morning the national press published a story about the crisis in social care.
Rising costs, the ageing population, difficulties recruiting staff and years of central government reducing its grant have left the service in crisis, a Local Government Association report states.
Izzi Seccombe, chair of the LGA’s community wellbeing board has also urged the chancellor to provide more funding for social care.
You may be aware that Devon County Council’s adult social care budget is currently around £5m overspent and that the council will need to recoup this money before April 2017.
Devon County Council was forced to apply a two per cent levy on council tax this year in order to plug some of the funding gap from central government.  This means of course, that residents are paying higher council tax for fewer services.
Now 71 community hospital beds in Eastern Devon are at risk of closure because of the funding crisis in our local NHS. And plans announced by the Success Regime to look after more people in their own homes could be hugely affected by the hole in Devon County Council’s adult social care budget.
I am writing to you to urge you to recognise the crisis that is sweeping our NHS locally and nationally. And the crisis in social care that is (and will) cause much hardship to the most vulnerable people in East Devon and across the country.
I am writing to urge you to back your colleague, Dr Wollaston and LGA by writing to the chancellor asking him to provide more funding for the NHS and social care, in his autumn statement.
Please do not reply enclosing a standard minister’s response littered with financial statistics falsely claiming that there isn’t a problem and lots of funding is being pumped in. I have two eyes, two ears and I follow what is happening in the NHS and social care assiduously.  So do many other people. It is in crisis and the crisis is deepening. Every single day. 
Each East Devon resident is at the mercy of this government and the decisions it makes over funding public services.  We rely on our elected representatives to make robust representations at government level on our behalf.
We all know the NHS and social care needs more money. Please please back Dr Wollaston, the LGA, local residents and ask the chancellor for more funding.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Best wishes
1. At 01:41 pm on 04th Nov Philip Algar wrote:
Many congratulations on a balanced, informed and persuasive letter. I particularly enjoyed your comment that you did not want the usual response that comes from MPs. However,  I wonder if this will have any effect on our current MP ? Thousands of people are now just beginning to realise what is being done to our NHS by this government but it may be too late for some hospitals and services.  Can we now expect our current MP, to part with tradition and to speak up for his constituents, even if it is too late for Ottery?  Will he continue to be more interested in Saudi and the Maldives?  We can but hope that another election will give us the chance to elect someone who wants to represent the people of East Devon.

Hugo Swire please back Sarah Wollaston and urge chancellor for more NHS and social care funding - Claire Wright .

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