This email is a request that you do all you can to prevent the closure of beds at Marlow and Thame. We are told that these bed closures will be for a 6 month ‘pilot’, however given that the term pilot was used for the closure of Ward 5B at Wycombe Hospital, it is pretty obvious that once these beds close they will not reopen.
I was upset to learn today that someone who more than deserves to be looked after in their own community hospital, is now having to stay further away from family and friends, making it difficult for visitors and impacting on their health.
Whilst the Trust plan to increase the number of clinics at these hospitals, (http://www.buckshealthcare.nhs.uk/Getting%20involved/Full%20pilot%20proposal%20Feb%2017%20FINAL.pdf) the closure of beds was not part of a consultation. In fact we need a proper consultation on the whole of our STP plan.
A deadline of 1st April gives us little time to ask questions. HASC have yet to publish a scrutiny of the Ward 5B closure and complete all their work on delayed discharges. Our understanding is that all the appendices of the STP are yet to be published in the public domain.
Where’s the evidence that these bed closures will actually improve outcomes, provide the needed support by appropriately qualified staff and actually save money?
I’m sure you’re already aware of the pressures our health service has faced over the winter due to a shortage of beds, including cancellations of operations at the John Radcliffe. It’s also a well known fact that social care is struggling.
A pilot that only runs in Spring and Summer seems difficult to understand.
Notable NHS voices such as Prof. Jarman and the General Secretary of the Royal College of nurses have expressed concerns with closure of beds and overwhelmed district nurses as ‘funding pressures bite’.
“Over the last 25 years in England we have doubled the number of admissions and we’ve halved the number of beds. If we cut more beds – and particularly if we cut the beds without proving that we have got adequate care in the community – I think that’s an extremely dangerous way to run a health service.” Prof Jarman http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-39204681
‘Janet Davies, General Secretary of the Royal College of Nursing, said: “This report lifts the lid on the dangers of trying to provide nursing care on the cheap. Patients waiting for district nurses at home are being let down as the funding pressures bite. “Nursing staff are straining to hold things together for their patients but they can only hold the fort for so long,” she said’ http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/03/14/nhs-rationing-leaving-dying-patients-suffer-pain-report-warns/
And yet we are closing community hospital beds…?
Further downgrades can be expected if ‘Sustainability and Transformation plans’ (STPs) are not halted. These are based on the NHS being forced to find £22 billion worth of savings, even though we spend less of our GDP on health than our neighbours and already have less beds per head than many countries
We are already ahead when it comes to downgrades of services, having received less funding in Buckinghamshire for some time. We need everyone to speak up for our NHS.
Next public meeting dates:
HASC 28 Mar 2017 10.00 am
Trust board meeting Wed 29 March, 2017, 9.00am
Education Suite, Florence Nightingale Hospice Charity, Unit 2, Walton Lodge,
Walton Street, Aylesbury
You’re also very welcome to get in touch with any suggestions.
Our petition: https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/no-further-downgrades-of-buckinghamshire-s-hospitals-including-community-hospitals reached its 1000 signature target in under two days.