Lewisham A&E is it under threat – Publish the STP ‘secret’ NHS Plans – Letter to the Editor

This letter has been published in The Mercury newsaper on Wednesday, 26th October:

Dear Editor,

The Government have decreed that areas must have Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs) to include NHS money and Local Authority social care funds. A national debate rages on whether there is enough money  overall. It is a fact that the full version of South East London’s ST Plan has not been published. A summary has been published but there is a  financial gap between the the two versions. We are about to consider major service changes in our hospitals and it is unacceptable to hide the full Plans from public.

Specifically, the Joint Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee (JHOSC) for South East London knocked back the consultation plans for significant changes to Orthopaedics in the region. The must public must see:

  • The clinical case for the proposed new model and the different options
  •  The options for change, and the ‘enhanced’ present version, and the recommendations.
  • The budget , which should include revenue and capital, in plain English
NHS hospitals finances can be harmed by major changes to service patterns and that is why we have proper consultation. Proper consultation relies on accurate and full information. I do not wish to see a repeat of illegal, sleight-of-hand consultations which ended up in the Courts and caused much public anguish when Lewisham A&E was threatened with closure.
Yours,

Councillor Alan Hall
Lewisham Council

Please note:
The full Overview and Scrutiny Committee of Lewisham Council endorsed a call for the full South East London NHS STP proposals to be published on Monday, 24th October.