Health Scrutiny Committee agrees to my proposal to discuss future of community hospitals, asks CCGs and NHS Property Services to January meeting

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Devon County Council’s Health and Adult Care Scrutiny Committee will ask both the NEW Devon and South Devon & Torbay Clinical Commissioning Groups, which commission services in community hospitals, and NHS Property Services, which now owns the hospitals, to its next meeting on 25 January to report on the future of the hospitals now that most of them have lost their in-patient beds.
The Scrutiny Committee decided to request the discussion at its meeting yesterday (21st) after I asked them to look further at the issue. I had presented a paper pressing for the contributions to community hospitals made by local communities and Leagues of Friends to be taken into account in planning their futures, at the Committee’s September meeting.
I raised particular concerns over the high rents to be charged by NHS Property Services, the fact that the CCG is committed to paying for space only until the end of the current financial year, and that the CCG has specifically said that existing outpatient services are not guaranteed to continue. 
‘Many services can be delivered in community hospitals’, I told the press after the meeting. “We should be talking about increasing not reducing the provision close to where patients live. If most services are concentrated in the RD&E, patients will continue to face long journeys into Exeter. With deteriorating public transport many will have to drive in and contribute to the city’s ever-growing congestion. We need joined-up planning at Devon and local levels to make the best use of the hospitals, which are community assets whoever is the legal owner.’
The motion to invite the NHS organisations was proposed by Cllr Claire Wright (Independent) and seconded by Cllr Nick Way (Liberal Democrat), and was carried with only two against.

4 thoughts on “Health Scrutiny Committee agrees to my proposal to discuss future of community hospitals, asks CCGs and NHS Property Services to January meeting

    AndyB said:
    November 22, 2017 at 5:40 pm

    Excellent tactic. Getting it from the horses mouth. But expect lies, double talk, and blame shifting.
    I suspect the future for Devon will be like this……

    ‘We were given the information by the outgoing head of the CCG who said only 50% of Brighton residents are seen in the Royal Sussex. 50%. Everyone else is sent here, there and everywhere – Private hospitals 12, 15, 20 miles away. I spoke to someone who said I tried to get into Royal Sussex and they sent them 16 miles away’.

    ‘They are mutating it to a US style insurance system. There is so much evidence of that it can no longer be misconstrued as a conspiracy theory – it’s happening. They are wrecking the NHS’.

    ‘It is an engineered shock doctrine – reduce the NHS to chaos, staff are leaving in absolute droves. They are creating chaos and driving NHS workers to despair. Then of course they can say things have to change and we have to get the private sector in to continue.

    ‘The trouble is for a lot of people they are not yet seeing it. There’s been massive outcries where they have announced hospital closures. And in Cornwall a few weeks ago, 700 people stormed a building and held the NHS rep hostage until they told them the truth.

    It is happening selectively and because they divided it all up, it’s happening in different regions.

    It’s a complete and utter stitch up’.

    Lots more in this article.


    Martin Shaw responded:
    November 22, 2017 at 5:59 pm

    I’ve an email commenting on the congestion in Exeter and the problems it causes for patients. If you have similar experiences, please let me know.

    ‘I recently had need to attend RD and E for a relatively straightforward procedure. I was more than happy to do Digby Sowton park and ride, I arrived with 1 hour to spare only to find that there were absolutely no spaces to be found. There was a notice at the entrance stating car park full I did drive around in hope, but cars were parked everywhere including non spaces. I was forced to leave and join the fray at RD and E. It was dreadful with more than one vehicle fighting for each space as it became available. I ended up winning the fight and running into my appointment with no time to spare. I did call into PALS and ask for my concern to be logged explaining that if they hadn’t closed community hospitals then maybe not do many would be going to RD and E at the same time. With the closures it is obvious that Digby Sowton Park and ride is no longer big enough.”


    AndyB said:
    November 22, 2017 at 7:05 pm

    It’s because the hospital staff have to use the park and ride too. that’s lots of staff every shift. and they are charged for it. All except the managers and senior execs of course. They have their parking spaces at RD&E still. It adds about 45 mins to a shift for many hard working staff, who have already spent their whole shift on their feet. The ‘Hospital’ do not have a policy to risk assess the health implications of long term standing for their staff of course.
    The problem is that the people responsible for these large projects are not capable of joined up thinking. You would get much better results from asking a group of A level design students.


    AndyB said:
    November 22, 2017 at 7:17 pm

    RD&E is outdated now and needs to be replaced with a new hospital outside the City, possibly a large hospital on the east devon / west dorset border. RD&E can no longer expand and the buildings were built so weak that they can’t build upwards. What they could do is use some of the car park space to build a large multi-story car park, until the hospital is replaced with a new one. But would the real working staff and patients get a look in ?


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