Campaigners to question Calderdale & Greater Huddersfield NHS bosses about hospital cuts consultation at 24th September meeting

Calderdale & Kirklees 999 Call for the NHS campaigners have questions for Calderdale and Greater Huddersfield Clinical Commissioning Groups’ Governing Bodies’ meeting. This starts at 12.15pm at Briar Court Hotel in Huddersfield on Thursday 24th September and is open to the public.

At the meeting, NHS commissioners from Calderdale and Huddersfield will propose a delay to public consultation on their proposed Right Care Right Time Right Place scheme, until after December 2015. The Governing Bodies are expected to go along with this recommendation.

The hospitals Trust is in deficit and in special measures under Monitor, the NHS competition enforcer. So far, it has no clear plan for a financially sustainable future for the hospitals.

The NHS commissioners say without robust evidence for the hospitals’ financial sustainability, they can’t go ahead with the public consultation on proposed hospital cuts and changes.

The hospitals Trust has invited Corporate Finance and Financial Strategy consultancy companies to bid to work on a five year financial plan for the hospital, to be completed by December 2015. Plain Speaker has asked the Trust how much this will cost and will publish the information when it is available.

Undermining the NHS as a comprehensive, universal health service that’s free at the point of need

Questions from Save the NHS campaigners cover the issue of whether, by continuing to move services out of Calderdale Royal Hospital into community locations, Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group isn’t making a public consultation irrelevant, since it’s already making changes without consulting on them.

Another issue is the reliability and robustness of evidence underpinning the proposed cuts and changes, and of the “engagement” process the Clinical Commissioning Groups have carried out.

And finally, there is the question of whether Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group is going to cut the mandatory services that the hospitals currently have to provide.  Along with all other CCGs, they have been told by Monitor to review and reduce these services by March 2016.

This will further undermine the NHS as a comprehensive universal health service – the Health and Social Care Act 2012 has already effectively destroyed this principle by removing the Secretary of State’s duty to provide such a service. Reduction of hospital services that have up till now been mandatory will set the seal on this.

Here is the Calderdale and Kirklees 999 Call for the NHS website