Saturday, December 2, 2023

Future of Local Healthcare up for Debate

Local group Belper Keep Our NHS Public have called a meeting next week to discuss the future of healthcare for residents in the area.

Belper Keep Our NHS Public have called a public meeting next week and have invited officials from the Clinical Commissioning Group and Hospital Trust. It will be held on Monday 18th January, 7.30 at the Strutts on Derby Rd and all are welcome.

Last year, in the Autumn statement, Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, said that he would aim to cut £22 billion from the overall health budget through efficiency savings. Since then questions have been raised as to the future of health care in the area with Babington Hospital facing possible closure.

NHS Southern Derbyshire have been asking residents in Belper and the surrounding area to have their say on services by carrying out a review of healthcare on offer to make sure it meets people’s needs and is fit for the future.

Andy Layzell, chief officer of NHS Southern Derbyshire Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “We’re aware changes need to be made to make sure our health services are fit for the future needs of residents of Belper and the surrounding area.

“This needs to be balanced against the tough financial climate facing all public services and the fact that people are living longer with complex health conditions.

“We have already introduced service improvements in the area which support people staying at home or as close as possible to maintain their independence and quality of life.”

Babington Hospital currently offers specialist support, including podiatry, baby care, physiotherapy and blood tests.

Research however suggests that sending people home too soon generally has a negative outcome on their health. The worry is that so many elderly people in the final weeks of their lives often do not have enough family support to supplement the care provided by community health teams. Many elderly residents have benefitted from the rehabilitation services provided by Babington Hospital, using it as a halfway house after treatment.

The meeting on Monday will address continuing concerns about which services are to be moved out and privatised, the safety of present staff contracts and if they will have to accept new contracts under private agencies. It will also discuss what will happen if the building is to be sold off and whether or not the estimated £4 million will go to local provision.

Keith Venables, from Belper KONP, has already spoken to some Belper residents who described the “happy relaxed atmosphere on the wards, delivered by a highly trained and committed team.” “Despite Babington being an old building, the wards are well equipped and bright with stunning views that are a tonic for the patients.”

The aim of Belper KONP is for a “Community Hospital serving Belper and District, with wards and services fit for the 21st Century, and staff who are trained, supported and have contracts that offer continuity and security. The people of Belper need to make our feelings very clear and fight for our services to be improved, based on public need and not private profit.”

Belper Keep Our NHS Public suggest that everyone fills in the CCG (Clinical Commissioning Group) Questionnaire that can be found here.

For more information about Mondays event click the following link.

One thought on “Future of Local Healthcare up for Debate

  • I think it would be a wrong move to meddle with Babbington, as it’s a much-needed resource for many vulnerable people. Plus which, despite everything that is said and promised, I foresee the site being made over to developers for yet more housing!

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