STAFFORD HOSPITAL’s decision to draft in extra nurses and beds instead of reducing services has been welcomed by the town’s MP.
Last night the Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust Special Administrator Board voted to accept plans to accept an offer of 20 extra nurses for Stafford Hospital, made by University Hospital of North Staffordshire.
They also agreed to take up 15 extra beds for South Staffordshire patients at Wolverhampton’s New Cross Hospital.
The measures mean that A&E opening hours will not need to be reduced and the number of available beds will not be cut for now.
Following the decision Stafford MP Jeremy Lefroy said: “I would like to thank UHNS and the Royal Wolverhampton for their offer of 20 senior nursing staff and a 15 bed ward.
“It is very positive that no further action will have to be taken by the board to reduce services due to staffing problems and I would like to thank the board of the hospital and the CCG for the all the work they have put into this agreement.
“However, the biggest thank you must go to the staff, who have been working tirelessly to ensure that the excellent standard of care at Stafford continues. To hear that some staff have been giving up annual leave to ensure that wards are adequately staffed is humbling and I hope that the new arrangements will bring them some relief.”
“I am continuing to do all I can to ensure that Stafford Hospital has a bright and strong future and that all staff will have job security and satisfaction.”
Sue Hawkins, a member of Support Stafford Hospital, said after the meeting: “I think we are a lot happier than we thought we would be. Our fear was that A&E hours would be reduced.”
The measures are in response to continuing staffing issues at the hospital, which meant that elective (non-emergency) surgery was suspended at Stafford and Cannock hospitals in December 2013. Around 75 per cent of elective surgery has since been resumed at Cannock Hospital, but procedures remain suspended at Stafford.