[T]oday NHS North Cumbria Clinical Commissioning Group’s (CCG) Governing Body agreed the next step in changes to inpatient beds at three community hospitals and stroke services in north Cumbria.
The services were subject to public consultation in 2016, with decisions made in March 2017. Since then work has been taking place to draw up safe implementation plans and alternative services with members of the community alliances. Those plans have been further scrutinised by the Implementation Reference Group, made up of members of the Governing Body and lay representatives. The full Governing Body gave the green light to changes this afternoon.
The community hospital plans have been developed by working with the community alliances formed in Alston, Maryport and Wigton and include alternative service provision for those communities.
The stroke plans have been developed with input from the Stroke Association and with input from community workshops.
Jon Rush, chair of NHS North Cumbria CCG, said: “There has been a lot of work to get to this point, in particular with the communities of Alston, Maryport and Wigton and it is a credit to all those that have taken part that we have been able to approve plans which are ambitious, community-focused and based on the needs of each area.
“We don’t underestimate how much time and energy this has taken by those involved and we are grateful to them all for their input. We hope this will continue as these changes take place and the relationships being developed in each area will continue to grow.
“Our role has been to look at the plans and to ensure the implementation will be carried out safely, leaving services which are sustainable and of benefit to those communities. We are pleased to be able to say that the plans developed around those community hospitals and for stroke services across the north of the county have been thoroughly considered and will bring benefits for our communities.”
What was agreed:
- New services for Alston are already underway, the beds there which have been closed since April 2017 because of staffing shortages will close formally
- Maryport and Wigton – the beds will close in a phased way between April and October 2018, subject to appropriately satisfying the conditions of other residential beds being available and fulfilling the workforce model.
- Alternative services will be developed in close working with the community alliances.
- Plans to develop a hyper-acute stroke unit at the Cumberland Infirmary will be progressed, with a focus on recruiting the appropriate workforce.
- There will be oversight of all operational changes by leaders from across the health and care system in north Cumbria.
The decisions were made at a meeting at the Oval Centre in Workington on Wednesday April 4.