chorley & south ribble hospital campaigner's choir delivers the 2017-08-31آ  chorley & south...

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    Chorley & South Ribble Hospital Campaigner's Choir delivers the goods

    After months of preparation (well, three practises and two outdoor performances), the combined voices of Singitbig and our own NHStival singers, all under the incredibly talented direction of Karen Strickland and Debbie Jones-Randall (of Blues and Jazz band 'Tipitina'), had a professional recording made of our performance of Coldlpay's “Fix You”.

    This was then 'mixed' with similar hospital choirs from around the country to produce our 'single' to show the Communities' support for our National Institution (the NHS) that the present Government is hell-bent on destroying through privatisation.

    The full final recording, with accompanying video footage, can be seen/heard via this link .. Our special thanks go to the choirs of Lincolnshire, Devon, Oxfordshire and Huddersfield for helping us celebrate 69 yrs of our glorious NHS.

    Image: Jean Maighread

    Photo credit: Barbara Barrow

    Photo credit: Facebook – Party in the Park (Astley)

    Photo credit: Andy Humphreys, at the Summer Soirée concert

    Logo design: Jean Maighread

    August 2017 Issue

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    What are Sustainability & Transformation Plans? 44 Sustainability and Transformation Plans - each covering an area of England that NHS England has defined as “footprints” - outline how the NHS and social care in each area are to:

    • obey harsh new financial controls and sanctions that will eliminate the current huge hospital and commissioner “deficits”, that are the result of government underfunding of the NHS since 2010

    • redisorganise the entire NHS so it is cheaper to run and sticks within the limits of a funding shortfall of around £25.5bn by 2020/21- without any possibility of running further “deficits” • radically increase opportunities for private and third sector companies in the NHS, by operating it as a set of public/private partnerships like PFI, but for services as well as buildings.

    They have to follow NHS England and NHS Improvement instructions, so will all be more or less the same, apart from local details Withdrawal and restriction of treatments

    Withdrawal and restriction of treatments

    Already the STPs mean withdrawal and restriction of treatments - particularly so- called “over the counter” products like special feeding for the frail and elderly, and treatments like hip replacements and cataract removal, that are not lifesaving but if not provided, leave people in pain and with disabilities.

    Closing/downgrading A&E and other acute hospital services

    STPs are not just about closing or downgrading a full accident and emergency unit or other acute hospital cuts and closures - although a Health Service Journal survey of clinical commissioning groups shows that a “substantial minority” of STPs will do this. Destroying the patient-doctor relationship

    There will be far fewer hospital beds, and more care at home via interactive digital technology, etc.

    The whole patient - doctor relationship will be undone - GP and community services that include many services formerly provided in hospitals will be delivered by huge “GP Federations” in a number of “hubs” that cover very big populations and provide standardised “care pathways” or “managed care” for various illnesses.

    Copying American private health insurance companies’ schemes, “care pathways” tell doctors what treatments they must give - undermining their vocational skills in identifying the best course of action based on an understanding of and empathy for their patients' situation.

    This enables care to be delivered by new grades of less skilled, cheaper staff. The 3 footprint STP says workforce spending is to be cut by

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    £42.9m compared to the amount that would be spent if there weren’t the funding shortage.

    The STPs place a big reliance on unskilled voluntary sector people, family and friends, as well as on patients themselves managing their own care. The cost savings from this will be big.

    Patient self-management

    STPs segment patients into groups according to their risk of hospital admission. The lowest risk groups will be subject to “preventive” care aimed at changing their behaviour to become healthier and teaching them to “self- manage” their illness - ignoring all the social, environmental and economic determinants of ill health and the fact that these are outside individuals’ control.

    Already GPs are “inviting” their patients to register for self- management courses run by companies like Self Management UK. This is about taking the “care” out of health care, to cut costs. But we are the sixth richest country in the world and the government funds corporate welfare to the tune of about £93bn/year. We can perfectly well afford a proper NHS.

    About the only good thing about being ill is that someone kind & knowledgeable looks after you. Take that away and what have you got left? Someone shouting at you to look after yourself. How unkind is that?

    Incentive to cherry pick most “cost

    effective” patients The "care closer to home" schemes in the big GP/community hubs that replace many hospital services will be funded on a per capita basis for a given population. This is copied from US private health insurance companies that are notorious for offering "managed care" to only the most “cost effective” patients. This will allow the organisations that hold the contracts for the care closer to home schemes and primary/community care hubs to make a profit. It also undermines the principle of a comprehensive health service.

    And are GPs on board with all this?

    A twitter survey of GPs and Practice managers found that 84% didn’t know what is in their area’s STP about General Practice/Primary care.

    No one else knows either - if we are to believe replies from Council Leaders to members of the public who have asked them to publish the STP for their area.

    Of course, NHS England and almost all the NHS and Local Authority organisations involved in the STPs are spinning them as being about improvement to the quality of NHS and social care services and reduction of health inequalities through preventive care.

    Don’t believe the spin.

    So, what is the reality?

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    The Reality of STP’s

     members of the public, NHS staff and even some politicians are only just becoming aware of the gravity of the situation which is unfolding with Sustainability and Transformation Plans.

     imposed from a directive from NHS England just before Christmas in 2015 as part of another major shake-up of the NHS.

     dramatic reorganisation of England’s NHS into 44 ‘footprint’ areas,

     with all NHS bodies collaborating with local government, social service agencies, private sector providers and charities on these new 5 year plans

     it has been suggested that this is NHS England’s best hope of balancing its budgets by 2020-21 or is it?

     the mismatched, changeable and unreliable series of 44 STP records have clearly fallen far short of NHS England chief executive Simon Stevens’ targets

     the STPs are behind schedule  lack public knowledge and

    support  no public involvement in the

    STP design process  will not deliver the promised


     no viable or sustainable plans for staffing

     proposals to divert services away from hospitals

     services proposed are not sustainable because there is virtually no finance in place to implement the STP’s

     financial figures do not add up as there is lack of financial detail

     with little or no evidence to suggest that proposals are workable as none of them have any tried and tested evidence that things are workable, in practice; safely, efficiently effectively

     the priorities should always be patients and staff

     health and wellbeing should come before cuts and the apparent privatisation of the NHS

     unparalleled reliance on charitable sector, is it morally right to rely on charity in this way, whilst essential services are disappearing

     unprecedented use of private sector contracts

    John Lister’s report for the Centre for Health and Public Interest (CHPI) in January 2017 results concludes, “when the innovations in STPs don’t deliver savings for the NHS, NHS

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    England will again resort to cuts and rationing. Indeed many knowledgeable people see the STPs as a smokescreen to divert attention from cuts at local NHS trust level, carving away staffing levels, imposing smaller scale service reorganisations, and preparing to push through controversial closures on ‘safety’ grounds (as has happened in Grantham and Chorley and is increasingly on the cards in Ealing)”.

    MARKET STALL STILL needs volunteers to help

    staff it! If you CAN spare an hour or two, please contact the

    Facebook page “Chorley A+E Market Stall”

    We have tombola 3 tickets £1 Football card £1 per go

    [winner £30] Mugs £4

    T-shirts £4 Hi-viz £4

    Pens £1.50 Donations always welcome.

    Open every Tuesday and Friday 1000-1430


    Only 2 years ago (2015), Paul Holt, from Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (which includes Chorley Hospital), said “its car park revenue was spent on operating the car parks which includes staffing, maintenanc


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