29th September 2013
Public Wants a Consultation to Changes at the West Cumberland Hospital
‘Closer to Home’ must be implemented
Copeland MP and Shadow Health Minister Jamie Reed has set out two key requirements for health services in West and North Cumbria in advance of his ‘health summit’ tomorrow. He said:
“The government’s NHS reorganisation has placed health services in turmoil across the country – but nowhere is this more acutely felt than in North and West Cumbria.
“The unwanted and costly top-down reorganisation of the NHS has sucked resources away from the front-line and destabilised local services and the public deserves to know whether or not ‘Closer to Home’ is going to be delivered.
“It isn’t clear what services are going to be provided by the West Cumberland Hospital or the Cumberland Infirmary in the future, there are fears that services are being cut by stealth, that certain services and treatments are being rationed and its clear that local patients and people are not being consulted about any of this. Fundamentally, ‘Closer to Home’ must be implemented.
“On Monday, I will be asking those responsible for commissioning local health services and providing local health services to come clean and be straight with patients and the public. Enough is enough.
“Service changes at the West Cumberland Hospital will be high up on the agenda. Permanent changes must not be allowed to go ahead without a full and frank public consultation.
“The debate on the future of services at our local hospitals needs to be had in public and the people of West Cumbria clearly agree with this as thousands of people have already signed my petition calling for a public consultation.
“It will be disastrous for public confidence in the Cumbrian Clinical Commissioning Group and the Northumbria Healthcare Trust if we do not now have an honest debate about the effects of government policy on local healthcare and about the services that they intend to provide.
“Local medical professionals, the public and patients deserve better than what they are getting right now.”