A CROSS party group of Stafford councillors, local health campaigners and the town's MP have written an open letter to leading doctors calling on them to clarify their stance on controversial plans to strip the county town of health services.
Members of Support Stafford Hospital, the Stafford Hospital Working Group, Jeremy Lefroy MP and representatives from Stafford Borough Council's Conservative, Labour and Independent groups have published an open letter to Stafford and Surrounds Clinical Commissioning Group and the 14 GP practices it represents, asking for them to "reaffirm its commitment to commission locally those services that the community identifies as essential."
The group says CCG's Chief Officer, Andrew Donald, had stated the CCG would commission those services the communtiy identified as essential, regardless of what hospital administrators (TSA) recommend.
Mr Donald said: "When the TSA made their initial recommendations in the summer we wrote to them raising a number of concerns.
"The updated recommendations they produced last month clearly addressed the clinical concerns we raised, and included proposals to provide our health economy with the financial support to deliver the sustainable clinical model we regard as absolutely essential."
The open letter is printed in full below
AN OPEN LETTER TO THE STAFFORD & SURROUNDS CLINICAL COMMISSIONING GROUP (CCG)AND THE 14 GP PRACTICES IT REPRESENTS.
The CCG’s Chief Officer, Andrew Donald, has previously stated that the CCG will commission, from Stafford Hospital, those services that the local community identifies as essential, regardless of what services the Trust Special Administrators (TSA) recommend for Stafford Hospital.
Over the past year the local community has made it very clear which key servicesit wants providing at Stafford Hospital in the future, and although the TSA have gone some way to addressing these needs, they have failed to satisfy the communities’ requirement for:
A consultant-led obstetrics and maternity service
A 24/7 consultant-led service for children, including in-patients and
aPaediatric Assessment Unit
A fully resourced level 3 critical care facility
An A&E service - available 24/7.
Whilst recognising that future commissioning decisions will involve choice and patient safety, we call upon the CCG to publically reaffirm its commitment to commission,locally, those servicesthat thecommunity identifies as essential and that it will therefore commission the above key services from Stafford Hospital.
Support Stafford Hospital group,
The Stafford Hospital Working Group
Jeremy Lefroy (MP),
Mike Heenan( Leader, Stafford Borough Council )
Jack Kemp ( Leader, Stafford Borough Council Labour Group ),
Barry Stamp ( Leader, Stafford Borough Council Independent Group ),
on behalf of the community served by Stafford Hospital.
16 January 2014