Public finally set for say on hospital review?

Public finally set for say on hospital review?

Public finally set for say on hospital review?

First published in News Kidderminster Shuttle: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

A PUBLIC consultation on the future of Worcestershire's hospitals - including Kidderminster's - could take place in the autumn.

Health bosses say the future of acute hospital services in Worcestershire programmes - the county hospital review formally known as the joint services review - is on track for public consultation this autumn, having bee given the thumbs up by NHS England.

The health service's strategic sense check gave the programme permission to progress to a formal NHS England assurance panel at the end of next month.

The three clinical sub-groups - women's and children's, emergency care and planned care - have completed their modelling work and produced specifications which are now subject to financial scrutiny to ensure they are affordable to the health community in Worcestershire.

Nigel Beasley, chairman of the independent clinical review panel, which is checking the programme is coming up with ideas which would work, together the the West Midlands Clinical Senate, will be asked to assure themselves the specifications meet the recommendations set out in the panel's report in January.

Worcestershire County Council will establish a joint overview and scrutiny committee in conjunction with neighbouring councils to scrutinise the programme and public consultation, which is due later this year. The programme is also due to report on progress at the county's overview and scrutiny committee in July 15.

Public consultation on the review is set to start in September and run for 12 weeks. The hospital review has, however, constantly missed dates set out in its timetable since its original launch in 2012.

Jo Newton, chairman of the programme's board, said: "A great deal of progress has been made in the last few months and we are preparing for public consultation in the autumn. Clinicians across the county have worked hard to produce robust clinical models, which give us a blueprint for the future of hospital care in Worcestershire for many years to come."

Despite originally being threatened with closure, proposals from those in charge of the review now appear to be good news for Kidderminster, as they do not recommend any further downgrading of the site and could even see the facility gain some services.

Health bosses, however, have previously admitted the plan has not yet been costed and could not say what would be in the firing line if more money needed to be saved when costs were considered, which is expected to be soon.

Comments (1)

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2:14pm Mon 30 Jun 14

Stephen Brown says...

The financial testing of the clinical model selected is still being done, and we won't know that outcome until the NHS assurance panel has it later on this month leaving little time for wider scrutiny outside the official bodies before the public consultation. That does cause some concern, that and it has dragged on for a long time now making it all rather frustrating.

Yes, whilst it looks like KIdderminster Hospital will not suffer further downgrading or loss and may even gain because of capacity issues at Worcester, we need to see the financial outcomes and then of course what the wider public consultation impact is to be confident Kidderminster is ok

The people of Wyre Forest spoke clearly and loudly in support of retaining all current services (including a 13,000 strong petition) during the Kidderminster Hospital Alliance's (KHA) own public consultation in 2012/13 - something I hope that at the end of all of this is respected.

During this long process, the KHA has continued to be involved and called for retention and enhancement of services at Kidderminster. Transport links are crucial (and KHA have made this point as bus services are cut) because whilst specialist central services are vital in saving lives, ultimately patients in recovery (and relatives etc) do not want to be travelling miles to access a follow-up service, anymore than people do to access other services they need that are not labelled as 'emergency'.
The financial testing of the clinical model selected is still being done, and we won't know that outcome until the NHS assurance panel has it later on this month leaving little time for wider scrutiny outside the official bodies before the public consultation. That does cause some concern, that and it has dragged on for a long time now making it all rather frustrating. Yes, whilst it looks like KIdderminster Hospital will not suffer further downgrading or loss and may even gain because of capacity issues at Worcester, we need to see the financial outcomes and then of course what the wider public consultation impact is to be confident Kidderminster is ok The people of Wyre Forest spoke clearly and loudly in support of retaining all current services (including a 13,000 strong petition) during the Kidderminster Hospital Alliance's (KHA) own public consultation in 2012/13 - something I hope that at the end of all of this is respected. During this long process, the KHA has continued to be involved and called for retention and enhancement of services at Kidderminster. Transport links are crucial (and KHA have made this point as bus services are cut) because whilst specialist central services are vital in saving lives, ultimately patients in recovery (and relatives etc) do not want to be travelling miles to access a follow-up service, anymore than people do to access other services they need that are not labelled as 'emergency'. Stephen Brown
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