Saturday, December 2, 2023

NHS Leaders Invite Belper Residents To Discuss Controversial Changes To Local Health Services

Amber Valley residents have been invited to join local NHS leaders to discuss the future shape of health services in the area, at a public meeting on Thursday 15 December at 2pm at Belper Town Football Club, Christchurch Meadow, Bridge Street, Belper.

Derbyshire Community Health Services NHS Foundation Trust is hosting the one-off public meeting for all to join in the discussion. It will be a chance for people to air views about the recently published Derbyshire Sustainability and Transformation Plan, Joined Up Care Derbyshire, which sets out a five year vision for the way health and social care services can be integrated across the county.

As well as an opportunity for sharing views and ideas about NHS and social care provision, there will also be a presentation from Ifti Majid who is one of the leaders most closely involved in taking forward the 72 page Derbyshire Sustainability and Transformation Plan (STP), which was published on 18 November.

Prem Singh, chairman of Derbyshire Community Health Services NHS Foundation Trust, said: “The Derbyshire Sustainability and Transformation plan will have far reaching importance for how we organise and provide care to patients locally in the future. As it’s just been published, we felt people might like an early opportunity to talk about it and share their views. So we are replacing the usual trust board agenda to focus on this topic and opening the floor to discussion.”

However, the lead up to and release of the STP has been met with fierce opposition locally; with a series of protests being held in both Belper and the wider Amber Valley. Local campaigner for NHS SOS Mike Jones, said the STP “threatens to slash 535 beds across the county with the inevitable closure of wards and community hospitals.”

He added: “Whilst some of the principles of ‘joined up care’ may sound attractive, nowhere in the STP does it provide detailed evidence of how this will be done so we are left with the impression -until persuaded otherwise – that this is nothing less than a plan to slash NHS and Social Care Budgets.”

The Trust has made steps to engage with the public as part of the consultation, but the timing of the meeting has been criticised for taking place when many residents are at work. There also seems to be some uncertainty over the timescale and level of public engagement.

The publication of the Derbyshire Sustainability and Transformation Plan follows close working by all health and social care organisations in Derbyshire to examine how care can be as efficient and effective as possible for patients over the next five years. The plan, outlining local priorities for Derbyshire, was submitted to NHS England in October, as well as plans covering every other area of England.

The Derbyshire plan was the first to be published in the East Midlands on 18 November 2016.

Cllr Maurice Neville said: “Many of the STPs already released across England have been either rejected by local councils or are generating significant public opposition, as the detail of proposed cuts and closures, amounting to £22 Billion per year, are emerging.”

4 thoughts on “NHS Leaders Invite Belper Residents To Discuss Controversial Changes To Local Health Services

  • Maurice Neville

    The STP proposes a reduction of at least £219 million in the funding needed by the Derbyshire NHS budget and 535 (30%) in Derbyshire hospital beds by 2021, including the closure of community hospital wards and entire community hospitals at Bakewell and Bolsover. Belper Hospital is also under threat. The President of the Royal College of Emergency Medicine says: “The performance of the urgent and emergency care system is the worst it has been for a decade, and departments are massively overcrowded. We’ve gone way too far already in terms of bed cuts, which put hospitals under intense pressure – going further will directly impact on patient care and death rates,” he warned. The community support needed to take pressure off the NHS has already been seriously damaged by the Government in cuts to Social Care and Public Health budgets – an additional funding gap of £136 million will be imposed on Derbyshire Council Council by 2021. Chris Hopson, CEO of NHS Providers, told the Commons Health Committee in October:
    .. ‘Unprecedented financial deficits faced by many hospitals risked ‘blowing up’ STPs. Hospital leaders were being forced to agree plans they knew would bust future budgets. Funding is going to drop, so they’re now looking at a set of figures that, to be frank, just look completely undeliverable.’ The British Medical Association has urged ministers to “sort out the mess” of the STPs, with its council chair, Dr Mark Porter, adding that the BMA has serious concerns about the “impossible” scale of savings required
    The Prime Minister and Chancellor completely ignored the urgent pleas from Tory and Labour MPs and virtually all NHS and Local Government organisations for more funding in the Autumn Statement. Our local MP Pauline Latham has repeatedly called local NHS campaigners ‘scaremongers’ and made no attempt whatsoever to protect Belper from the cuts to the NHS and Social Services imposed by her government. All we are getting is a plan for more cuts, hatched in secret, and promoted by NHS officials who have been bullied into co-operation by threats to deny access to funding.

  • Richard Hobson

    We still have to BORROW 20 million pounds every year to GIVE away in foreign aid , surely something is wrong with govt. policy when our own healthcare and nursing requirements are beyond our means

  • David George

    Health and social care are not beyond our means but beyond the will and compassion of a government who would rather take a wrecking ball to the NHS and leave our elders helpless and alone than either raise taxes or decide we can’t afford Hinckley Point or Polaris.
    “We can’t afford it” is the same denial of responsibility that has the ignorant, hate-filled right blaming immigrants when they can’t get a job, doctor’s appointment, affordable home or their children into the nearest school. Put the blame for the mess we are in firmly on the shoulders of this cynical, cruel, callous Conservative Party. They should be locked up for what they are doing.

  • Maurice Neville

    The aid budget is £12.2Billion not 20 and we don’t borrow to pay for it. Most of what is pushed out about the Aid budget by UKIP and the gutter press is not just wrong but deliberately distorted – just like this ignorant and mean minded contribution from Mr Hobson

Leave a Reply

GDPR, Your Data and Us:

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.