NHS commissioners must back off from supporting the flawed hospital cuts Full Business Case

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On October 12th Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group Governing Body will meet at Shay Stadium in Halifax, to consider the recommendation that they tell the NHS England quango that they support Calderdale and Huddersfield hospital trust’s Full Business Case.

The recommendations in a paper to the Governing Body say that the Full Business Case is in line with the clinical model that was consulted on; is affordable; and provides a sustainable plan not only for the Trust but the wider Calderdale and Greater Huddersfield System of care.

NHS protectors challenge this perception. They point out that Calderdale and Kirklees Councillors’ Joint Health Scrutiny Committee have referred the hospital cuts and changes plans to the Secretary of State for Health as unfit for the people of both areas, unfit for the local NHS and lacking in the consultation department. Continue reading

Posted from here.

Calderdale Royal Hospital PFI equity sold on for profit YET AGAIN

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In 2014, UCV Plain Speaker reported that equity in the Calderdale Royal Hospital (CRH), which is notorious as one of the most costly and least accountable PFI schemes in the NHS, had changed hands 10 times, and that according to the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee, PFI equity sales are

“the unacceptable face of capitalism.”

On 19th January 2016, a big chunk of the Calderdale Royal Hospital PFI equity changed hands again,  for an undisclosed amount that you can be sure generated a tidy profit for the seller. Continue reading

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Hebden Bridge GPs are reviewing urgent appointments process

The Hebden Bridge Group Practice manager has replied to patients who recently wrote to the practice manager and GPs with a complaint  that the only way to get an urgent GP appointment is to call 111.  After asking the 20 or so questions on their script, NHS 111 then sends a report to the GP surgery, which then decides if a doctor will call the patient or see them. Continue reading

Posted from Hebden Bridge, England, United Kingdom.

NHS privatisation in Calderdale is almost twice the national average

Four years ago, Craig Whittaker assured me there would be no privatisation of the NHS.

In 2015-16 Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group spent 13% of its £267,919,000 budget on non-NHS (ie private sector) providers.

This is not counting what it spends on social care, which is mostly privatised, and on voluntary sector organisations, which is “soft” privatisation.

When you count those in, 21% (£56,510,000) of the Clinical Commissioning Group’s budget goes on non-NHS providers. Continue reading

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Please sign open letter to Valley Road GP surgery if you’re fed up with being fobbed off to 111

If you are registered with Hebden Bridge Group Practice and agree with this letter, please sign your name in the comments box – or email it if you don’t want to be publicly identified. I will add your names to the letter and deliver it to the GP surgery in a few days.

Open Letter

Dear Practice Manager and GPs

A number of patients at the Valley Road GP surgery have found that when they phone the practice for an urgent appointment they are told to call 111, who, after asking the 20 or so questions on their script, will then send a report to the GP surgery, which will then decide if a doctor will call them or see them.

This is making people very cross and anxious as often they are people with ongoing health problems who know that they need to be seen at the GP surgery. Continue reading

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Hebden Bridge and other Calderdale GP practices’ patient data systems are unlawful

Hebden Bridge Group Practice and other GP practices in Calderdale use an electronic patient data system called TPP SystmOne that has an “enhanced data sharing” system that shares confidential patient data outside the GP practice eg with hospitals, care homes and community services.

Flaws in the system mean data protection is being breached as the sharing system gives access to our shared data to thousands of “authorised users” within the NHS, which is not what is supposed to happen. It should just go to whatever other NHS departments are treating you, in addition to your GP.
Continue reading

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So many revolving doors – was Bootham Park Hospital closed in the interests of patients or profits?

Bootham Park Hospital was closed at the end of September 2015 on the sudden instruction of the Care Quality Commission, following their unannounced inspection five days before the contract for running the hospital was due to be taken up by Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys mental health trust.

The inspection was apparently triggered by whistle-blowing from a ward manager who used to work for the Care Quality Commission.

Despite massive public opposition to the hurried closure – and an assurance to the Care Quality Commission from the head of Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys mental health trust that they had £2m earmarked for fixing the maintenance problems that were the reason for closing Bootham Park Hospital – the Care Quality Commission refused to budge.

None of this story makes any obvious sense. So what’s been going on?

Do fast-revolving doors between key public organisations and private health sector companies create a shadow NHS, where decisions are made in the interests of profit not patients? Continue reading

Posted from here.

New-build mental hospital for York – the murky workings of a post-democratic, privatising NHS

The sudden closure of Bootham Park Hospital in York at the end of September 2015 with just five days warning –  followed sixteen months later by the proposal for a replacement new build mental health hospital in York, provides a case study in the murky workings of a fast-privatising NHS that lacks democratic accountability

Revolving doors between the NHS and private companies mean that conflicts of interest are rife – but barely examined.

Bootham Park’s closure, on the order of the Care Quality Commission following an unannounced inspection, forced the immediate discharge or relocation of 30 inpatients  and affected 400 outpatients.

It was met by public outrage and opposition as the mental health hospital – the only one in York and the surrounding area – had been vital to the wellbeing and survival of many patients. Continue reading

Posted from Hebden Bridge, England, United Kingdom.

Secretive Sustainability and Transformation Plans are likely to have cost NHS over £16 million in management consultancy fees

Underfunded NHS clinical commissioning groups could be spending over £16 million between them, for advice from management consultants on the secretive shake-up of health and social care in England.

Unite, with 100,000 members in the NHS, said that health secretary Jeremy Hunt needs to come clean on the spending on management consultants in relation to the 44 Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs) for England.

Unite calculated that £15 million is the likely cost, after the media revealed that NHS chiefs in Coventry and Warwickshire had forked out £343,000 to PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) for advice on saving money in their local STP plan.

However this may well be a significant underestimate. The British Medical Association has just reported that health leaders drawing up the North Central London STP have paid £2.3m to eight different companies – including accountants Deloitte and management consultants McKinsey – for services stretching from ‘administrative support’ and ‘financial modelling’ to ‘communications support’.

Upper Calder Valley Plain Speaker reported in October last year that the 11 West Yorkshire and Harrogate Clinical Commissioning Groups had between them paid £378K to management consultancy company Attain  to set up and run the West Yorkshire Sustainability and Transformation Plan Programme Management Office. Continue reading