Protest secret plans to cut and further privatise NHS – Halifax Town Hall, Thursday 25 August, 9.30am.

A secret process to cut and further privatise NHS services is charging ahead across England. It goes under the name of Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs).

England has been divided into 44 Sustainability and Transformation Plan ‘footprints’ which must make huge spending and service cuts and increase NHS privatisation in order to access “transformation” funds.

STPs are being drawn up in conditions of secrecy imposed by NHS England. Their North Midlands Director of Commissioning Operations, Wendy Saviour, told a recent meeting of Shropshire Clinical Commissioning Group:

“STPs are not meant to be published at all. They should not go to Board meetings. Some of them contain very radical things… These are highly political and highly contentious…
Once they’re washed off and the national messages are gathered together, they will be published.”

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Huge new cuts to our hospitals from October

At their August 11th meeting (2pm, Shay Stadium, Halifax), Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group Governing Body will face truly chilling facts about the effects of so-called Sustainability and Transformation Plans, which will start to be carried out in October/November this year.

If you think this is all a VERY BAD IDEA, please tell your MP and Councillors. And get in touch with Calderdale and Kirklees 999 Call for the NHS (CK999) or one of the other organisations in the CK999 network and help us campaign to stop and reverse NHS Cuts and sell offs. Continue reading

Jeremy Hunt’s puppets’ useless response to hospital cuts financial case for change questions

fish for jenny(2)_namedToday Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group – last summer accused by the Chair of Calderdale Council Adults Health & Social Care Scrutiny Panel of swimming around in their own little goldfish bowl instead of openly discussing issues with the public – sent me a singularly useless and uninformative response to questions I sent in for their 20th Jan 2016  meeting, held to rubber stamp their decision to “consult” the public on their hospital cuts plans. Continue reading

Huddersfield and Calderdale hospitals on black alert again due to shortage of beds and staff

On Wednesday 27 January, both Huddersfield Royal Infirmary and Calderdale Royal Hospital (CRH) told staff they were  on “black alert” – not for the first time this year.

At the 12th January Junior Doctors Strike picket, a junior doctor said that CRH had been on black alert for most of the previous week.

Black alert is when the hospital can’t take any more patients because it hasn’t got beds for them. This means patients who come to A&E may spend time on trolleys in corridors before they can be admitted as inpatients. Continue reading

Ernst & Young calling the shots over Right Care Right Place Right Time scheme

The clinical model for the proposed Right Care Right Place Right Time scheme, that NHS commissioners and the Calderdale and Huddersfield hospitals have finally agreed after arguing about for two years, could be thrown up in the air yet again by a cost-cutting 5 year hospitals financial plan that is being drawn up by Ernst and Young (EY), at a cost of £0.5m to the deficit-ridden hospitals Trust.

Screen shot 2015-11-16 at 10.58.27Our hospitals may be broke, but the global management consultancy company EY had a global income of $US28.7bn in the financial year ending 30 June 2015. This is its fastest growth since 2008, an 11.6% increase over 2014. Obviously clearing up the mess from the 2008 bankers crash of the world economy is good business for EY and its ilk. Continue reading

Scrutiny Committee Councillors need to up their game and protect #Calderdale and #Huddersfield hospitals

The Calderdale and Kirklees Joint Health Scrutiny Committee (JHSC) met on Wednesday 21 October, to find out what’s happening with the proposed hospital cuts and changes that are known as Right Care Right Time Right Place.

The meeting was like falling down Alice in Wonderland’s rabbit hole and arriving in time for the Lobster quadrille.

Will you, won’t you, will you, won’t you, will you consult the public?

The recurring theme at the JHSC was: Will you, won’t you, will you, won’t you, will you join the Public Consultation dance?

JHSC 21 Oct._Quadrille_2







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Monitor has hospital in stranglehold – hospital cuts and changes consultation on hold

As expected, both Calderdale and Greater Huddersfield NHS commissioners today agreed to postpone the public consultation on proposed hospital cuts and changes. The consultation had been scheduled to start this month.

One burning issue for the public is what NHS bosses want to do to our A&Es. A slide presented at the meeting showed we could end up without a full A&E at either hospital. The slide said that one emergency centre or specialist emergency centre is planned – but draft specifications from NHS England say that only specialist emergency centres provide full A&E care.

The delay to the public consultation is because the Clinical Commissioning Groups don’t know if the hospitals Trust will be financially viable in five years time and are waiting for it to produce a Five Year Financial Plan.

The Trust – along with half the Foundation Trusts in the country – is in deficit. It is under special measures from Monitor, the NHS competition enforcer and financial regulator. Monitor is telling it to make big spending cuts, since Foundation Trusts are not allowed to operate at a loss. Continue reading

Barcoding patients at heart of hospital contract row

The contract for Calderdale Royal Hospital services, which should have started on 1 April 2015, is still not signed and on 24th July both parties entered arbitration with the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDAR) as mediator. The outcome is not yet public knowledge – but contract negotiations were still continuing on 4th August.

Problems with the contract from the Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group’s (CCG’s) point of view were discussed at the June 11th Calderdale CCG Governing Body Meeting, while the hospital Trust’s 28th July Board meeting papers show some of their side of the conflict.

The Trust are holding out for a Payments by Results contract, which Dr Matt Walsh told the CCG Governing Body “is not the CCG’s preference”. Until now, the contract between the CCG and Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust (CHFT)  has been a block activity contract, where the CCG pays for a set amount of clinical activity.

The barcoded patient Continue reading

Hospitals Trust calls for Monitor investigation into award of £238m contract to Locala

Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust (the hospitals Trust) has told staff that it is lodging a formal complaint with Monitor (the NHS competition enforcer) about the Clinical Commissioning Groups’ (CCGs) award of the £238m Kirklees community health services contract to Locala.

The hospitals Trust had also bid for the contract, in partnership with the three Federations representing GPs across Kirklees (PHH, Rowan and CURO), Mid-Yorkshire Hospitals Trust and Forget Me Not Children’s Hospice.

Once Greater Huddersfield and North Kirklees CCGs had publicly announced that Locala had got the contract, Owen Williams, the hospital Trust Chief Executive, emailed staff: Continue reading

Calderdale and Kirklees Councillors must solve Care Closer to Home contract mystery at Joint Health Scrutiny Committee on Monday

Anyone who wants to find out about the sell off of our NHS, and understand how this is going to affect patient care, has their work cut out as the plot thickens around the £238m Huddersfield and North Kirklees contract for Care Closer To Home.

This contract is to take services out of the hospital and integrate them into community health and social care services for chronically ill and frail elderly people, with the aim of cutting acute and A&E hospital admissions and services. This is in order to cut NHS spending. Otherwise a £22bn NHS funding gap is predicted to open up by 2020.

The award of the contract has been at a standstill for a month. Yesterday the Health Service Journal reported that the massive contract has gone to a consortium led by Locala, the community health company that was set up in 2010 with staff and assets transferred from NHS Kirklees Primary Care Trust.

The organisations involved – the Clinical Commissioning Groups and Locala – maintain that the contract is still at a “standstill”.

Despite the confusion, Calderdale and Kirklees Councils’ Joint Health Scrutiny Committee (JHSC), which meets in Huddersfield Town Hall, 10.30 am on Monday 29th June, has no plans to ask Greater Huddersfield Clinical Commissioning Group what’s going on. Which rather gives the lie to their earlier promise that they would closely scrutinise this contract. Continue reading