Wednesday, 31 October 2018

Health and politics in East Devon

Health issues are inevitably linked to politics - and, apparently, high-speed car chases:
Futures Forum: County Council rejects calls to investigate Devon NHS cuts
Futures Forum: County Council to consider "taking a strong position on protecting our community hospitals and a strong position on resisting any future plans to sell off the buildings" 

East Devon's MP has been insisting that community hospitals have a future:
BLOG: Are our community hospitals safe? | Hugo Swire
Positive News as Health bosses have ‘no plans’ to sell St John’s Court | Hugo Swire

But his political opponents point to discrepancies:
Who’s ‘weaponising’ community hospitals, @HugoSwire? Two years ago you were happy to sell out Seaton Hospital to save your parliamentary career « SEATON & COLYTON matters
Hospitals should not be used as “weapons” | East Devon Watch

And meanwhile, there are questions around how District and County councillors view the future of community hospitals:
@philtwiss’claim that @SonjaManton said ‘there are no plans to close any community hospitals in our area’, not backed up by @NEWDevonCCG. What’s the explanation, Phil? « SEATON & COLYTON matters
Indies win protection for community hospitals ..... but Tories insert get out clause - Claire Wright

The body at the centre of decision-making is the Clinical Commissioning Group - and there are now questions about the future of its make-up:

Concern over merger of two of Devon's NHS bodies 

26 Oct
Sophie Pierce
BBC Radio Devon

There are claims a planned merger between two NHS bodies in Devon will result in a less accountable system with no guarantee of improved healthcare for patients. At present, there are two clinical commissioning groups - or CCGs - which plan and buy healthcare for local people. There's one covering the North, West and the East of the county - NHS NEW Devon CCG - and the other covering Torbay and the South - NHS South Devon & Torbay CCG.

Health bosses want them to merge into one big organisation, claiming this will save money and result in a stronger service. They say there's already been benefits from the two organisations working more closely together.

But GPs in Torbay have voted against the move and local councillor in the Bay, Swithin Long, is also worried...

Dr Paul Johnson, Clinical Director of the Torbay and South Devon CCG says: "We've seen a lot of benefits for our patients, for our hospitals, but also financially. This demonstrates very clearly to me the next logical step would be becoming a single CCG and it would only increase those benefits that we see."

BBC Devon & Cornwall Live: 26 October - BBC News
Clinical Commissioning Group merger for Devon – good or bad? | East Devon Watch

A further area for contention is how to manage the caring services:
Scrutiny review to take place into how Devon carers are coping - Claire Wright
Protesters heckle and boo as plan to change foster carers fees approved - Claire Wright
Devon County Council’s cabinet set to stick to foster carers cuts plan, despite major protests - Claire Wright

Finally, there are the national campaigns:
Keep Our NHS Public

And the Devon campaigns:
SOHS North Devon Save Our Hospital Services

With the East Devon Watch blog looking at 'Integrated Care Providers', quoting the Keep Our NHS Public group:


16 OCT 2018

Greetings, KONP supporters in the South West!

Important information from Keep Our NHS Public on… Integrated Care Providers

The Government likes to bury its plans to defund, break-up and privatise the NHS in jargon. KONP are producing a series of videos to help you understand what’s going on…


WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: What is an Integrated Care Provider? - YouTube

NHS England is consulting on the contract for a new model of health and social care provision that threatens the break-up of the NHS into units run by less accountable ‘Integrated Care Providers’ – or ‘ICPs’. Each of these ‘business units’ would control spend and rationing of healthcare for populations of up to 500,000. These huge contracts will be eminently open to the private sector to compete for.

The ICPs will deliver the dangerous new restructuring plans of government which could see fragments of the NHS managed by non-NHS, non-statutory and therefore less accountable bodies. They are the embodiment of government plans to disperse the NHS and its staff, drive down public funding, promote private contracts and put cost limits and profit before patient safety.

Integrated Care Provider contracts:

Dis-integrate the NHS;
Give control to non-NHS bodies potentially beyond scrutiny;
Threaten public accountability;
Hand over control to these non-NHS bodies for 10-15 years;
Manage multi-billion-pound contracts for blocks of 500,000 population;
Open the door to private companies winning these contracts.

Please watch the video above and share on social media to help spread the word about the Government’s deliberate and insidious privatisation plans.

You can also visit our website:

Integrated Care Providers – What are they and how to oppose them – Keep Our NHS Public
and our Facebook Page:
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: What is an Integrated Care Provider? Watch the video - Sign the petition: https://weownit.org.uk/ICP-petition-NHS The Government buries its plans to privatise the NHS in jargon.
for more information, videos and links.

For a written explanation of ICPs and what the represent for the NHS please read and share this briefing (broken link) by HCT co-chair and KONP campaigner Louise Irvine.

How can you help?

1. Along with our friends at We Own It
We Own It
and Health Campaigns Together
HCT - Health Campaigns Together
we have created a petition
An NHS carve up? Don't let them get away with it | We Own It
calling on the Government to:

a) Abandon the Integrated Care Provider contract model:
b) Guarantee that any Integrated Care Provider organisations will be statutory organisations i.e. NHS bodies, not private providers.
c) Focus health improvement efforts on pressing the government for:
o Sufficient funding and staffing for health and social care.
o Social care to be brought into public provision, free at point of use
o Legislation to end the failed NHS contracting system and to renationalise the NHS: the only sound basis for service integration.

An NHS carve up? Don't let them get away with it | We Own It

2. NHS England have launched a 12 week consultation on contracting arrangements for Integrated Care Providers. You can read the full consultation document here

HCT have created a document of a sample response
Suggested lines for summary answers to consultation questions.doc
in case you wish to take some guidance from KONP and HCTs position.

You can also see a comprehensive written response:
to the proposed changes from the JR4NHS team who, along with the late Stephen Hawking, took Jeremy Hunt and ACOs to Judicial Review this year.

3. Share the KONP video, HCT and KONP briefing and the JR4NHS response to the NHSE consulation around your networks and on social media.

What can WE do to save our NHS? | East Devon Watch.

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