Wednesday, February 14, 2007

CHSG Press Release 13th Feb 2007

City Hospital Supporters Group of about 200 and growing comprises members of the community local to City Hospital and its staff. It has submitted its response to the document Shaping Hospital Services for the Future to the Health Scrutiny and Overview Committee of Birmingham City Council.

  • They say “moving inpatient emergency general surgery, trauma and children’s beds from City Hospital to Sandwell Hospital will adversely affect the service provided by City Hospital’s A&E Department to its local community.” The Trust deny any adverse effects. One senior respected consultant at the hospital states “the Trust’s plans make no sense.”
  • At the moment patients needing the above services can get them 24/7 at City Hospital. If that is no longer to be the case it is a worse service for local people. Worse means being taken to a hospital further away, maybe Sandwell but it could be a lot further. They point out that this will hardly improve the outlook of those seriously in need of care.
  • They are very critical of the proposal for a Part-Time Children’s Assessment Unit pointing out that this would deny equity of access to local children. If the child presented during opening hours presumably it would be able to stay at City, but if not it would be off to Sandwell or further afield. The quality of care would depend on what time the child was ill “Are they planning a shop or a hospital?” say City Hospital Supporters.
  • They go on to point out that claims made by the Trust that their proposals are necessary because of problems with junior doctors hours and recruitment and retention of staff have no substance. There does not even appear to be a financial case for the Part-Time Children’s Assessment Unit.
  • They are very critical of the consultation process, in effect two consultations at the same time. It has been difficult to inform the community about what is going on. Getting the green consultation booklets is not easy especially if you do not have access to the internet and e-mail. The Trust has not seized the opportunity to hand out booklets to those most affected namely inpatients, outpatients and their relatives
  • The City Hospital Supporters believe that the proposals are not in the best interests of local people and the consultation process has been inadequate. These are the essential criteria for Birmingham City Council Health Scrutiny and Overview Committee to refer the proposals to the Secretary of State for Health unless the Trust modifies its position.
  • The mantra of City Hospital Supporters is that the people of West Birmingham continue to have 24-hour access to high quality emergency care for adults and children on the City Hospital site, until a new hospital which can provide this service opens its doors.
  • If people would like to find out more about City Hospital Supporters Group, obtain the booklet Shaping Hospital Services for the Future with advice about completing the consultation form and signing our petition visit:

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