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A 999 Call for the NHS resource

Welcome to MAD AS HELL


This is a space to share your information, your concerns, your experiences from your local area.

By MadAsHelll&NotGoingtoTakeitAnymore, Dec 20 2016 09:56PM

Report from Kevin Donovan, Defend our NHS

[with apologies for the Leader of the Council’s use of the phrase ‘going forward’ which makes one’s toes curl]

Jeremy Hunt and Theresa May are about to feel the force of some strong anti-STP feeling. Campaigners in Wirral scored a major victory on Monday night (19th December). A full meeting of Wirral Borough Council voted overwhelmingly to reject the Cheshire & Merseyside STP in the strongest terms.

The motion carried said:

This Council is extremely concerned about the failure of NHS England to consult with elected members and the public prior to the publication of Sustainable Transformation Plans which propose far-reaching changes to the configuration of hospitals in the acute sector and the delivery of health services in Cheshire and Merseyside in order to plug a £908m hole in the NHS finances.

Council agrees to write to the Secretary of State for Health and call on the government to withdraw these Plans immediately with a view to holding urgent discussions with key partners, including local Councils, on how good quality health and social care services can be provided going forward based on continuing to provide a National Health Service which is properly funded and free at the point of need.

Council is appalled that under this Tory government we have:

·      The worst NHS deficits on record - £2.45 billion

·      In England around 3.9 million people are now on the waiting list to start treatment

·      1.8 million people waited four or more hours in A&E last year – up over 400 per cent since 2010

·      One in four patients have to wait a week or more to see or speak to a GP or nurse, or don’t get an appointment at all.

Council calls on Theresa May to give the NHS the funding it needs.

The rejection follows a long campaign by Defend Our NHS (DONHS) which has hundreds of members in Wirral and more widely across the North West and other parts of England, as well as several thousand Facebook ‘friends’. Council committees and councillors were lobbied and provided with evidence and arguments to use in making the case against the ‘slash, trash and privatise’ proposals.

Councillors from the Labour Party, along with Lib Dems and Wirral’s one Green Party representative, supported the motion; the Tory minority, to their shame (and to the harm of their constituents) voted against. Speakers, including some who had attended a recent large DONHS public meeting were passionate in support for our NHS. The latest leaflets from the Stop STPs campaign were particularly effective.

Victory gives heart to core DONHS activists who have now established their own plans for a higher profile media and public presence. Buoyed by several generous donations from trade union branches the Group will be much more visible with banners, leaflets and presence on the street. Group members will now be ‘howling’ more loudly against the STPs on 23rd December.

By MadAsHelll&NotGoingtoTakeitAnymore, Dec 1 2016 11:51PM

Our North West Mad as Hell And Not Taking It Any More correspondent Kevin Donovan recently urged the public to call upon Wirral MPs and Labour and other councillors to try to rein in the Chair of Wirral Health and Wellbeing Board, Cllr Phil Davies (nominee for String Vest Award) and the runaway coach of the Sustainability and Transformation Plan.

And people did.

On 28th November 2016, Wirral People Overview and Scrutiny Committee agreed this statement by a majority decision:

“The Committee is concerned that elected members have had no opportunity to feed into the development of the STP nor were they given the opportunity to see the plan before it was published on 23 November.

The Committee is also concerned about any lack of meaningful consultation with the public of Wirral prior to the publication. As a result of the failure by the authors of the Plan to engage with the local authorities in Cheshire and Merseyside, the Committee is concerned at the high levels of anxiety and speculation on the implications of future delivery of health service in Wirral which the plan has generated.

The Committee further notes that although there is very little detail included, many of the proposals would represent a significant variation in service delivery and would therefore need to be presented for scrutiny to this Committee and possibly a pan-Merseyside and Cheshire Committee before any proposals could be implemented.

The Committee does not believe that Wirral Council can agree to the STP without absolute clarity on the proposals and a meaningful process of consultation and engagement with elected members and local residents.”

Is this the Road to Jamsaskus?

The Road to Dontaskus?

The Road to Damnaskus?

Or The Road from Posttruthus?

Are Councillors playing to the gallery or actually doing something useful when they say they reject the STPs?

Our NWMHNTIAM (North West Mad as Hell and Not Taking It Any More) Correspondent says:

“This is a real emergency! The crucial point is that contracts for STP-related NHS/care services have to be signed by 23rd December so delaying any protest/consultation is far too late. Councillors may argue that they can’t halt the STP avalanche but the Local Government Assocation & NHS Providers’ STP briefing clearly states: ‘Although STP leads and the partnerships working on the plans have no statutory basis and are not legal entities, they derive their authority to act from the consent and participation of their participant organisations, namely CCGs, providers of NHS services and local authorities.’

The consultation is simply hot air by some councillors to make it look as though they are standing up for the NHS when in fact they are happy to let things take their malign course. 23rd December is the end! Unless.... a council can mount a strong legal challenge- now there's an idea...

Could it be a Hammersmith & Fulham Council legal challenge?

How did things get to this sorry pass? You can read the backstory CLICK HERE

By MadAsHelll&NotGoingtoTakeitAnymore, Nov 22 2016 06:48PM


Another one bites the dust - Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Sustainability and Transformation Plan published today.

A local Stop STPs campaigner who is SADDER THAN HELL AND NOT GOING TO TAKE IT ANYMORE says: "My heart sinks. They're looking for a 1.3million SURPLUS!!? How many dead people is that?"

The Chair of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough STP, David Astley, writes

" the interim STP summary published in July ... forecasted that as a system we will have a £250m financial deficit by 2020/21, the STP outlines that this is in addition to £250m of savings and efficiency plans individual Trusts and the Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) need to deliver over the same period. This makes a total system-wide financial challenge of £500m over the next four years. It also estimates the need to invest £43m to improve services over these four years which increases the total system-wide financial challenge from £500m to £543m. If the Trusts and CCG meet their savings and efficiency plans, and all aspects of the STP are delivered, this will achieve the savings and efficiency target (of £500m) and produce a small NHS surplus of £1.3m (by 2020/21)."

Letters to David Astley stating outright opposition to his STP are called for. You can find a Letter to the STP BOARD template in our STP FLATPACK - click on the link on right of the page.

You can find the Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Sustainability and Transformation Plan - aka Fot for the Future - here: CAMBS & PETERBOROUGH STP

Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Health and Care System Sustainability and Transformation Plan- November 2016

By MadAsHelll&NotGoingtoTakeitAnymore, Nov 20 2016 02:19PM

Protect public from shameful, mad, ridiculous and dangerous STP Oxon KONP tell Council

We were present on Thursday the 17th November outside and inside Oxford County Hall for the Oxfordshire Health & Scrutiny Committee (HOSC which become more Oversight & facilitating) to start the necessary pressure to remind our local elected councillors of their duty and obligations to both public and patients to protect against the 'shameful' , 'mad' . 'ridiculous and dangerous content of Sustainability and Transformation Plan proposals.

Two Initial oral statements made by members of the 'coalition'

The public does not want STP and the public outcry is beginning. And just watch the efforts being made to quell opposition. The Buckinghamshire Oxfordshire and Berkshire STP plan orders that at every stage, communications experts must be employed to dress up the bad news as deliriously good.

It does not take the brains of an archbishop to realise the trust has made changes at the Horton to make STP easier to push through. And I have to thank them actually, because these so-called temporary moves are demonstrating how damaging and dangerous STP will be.

I hope recounting some recent stories will demonstrate to you – and the managers who ultimately bear responsibility – that the consequences of STP will be unjustified and completely unacceptable.

Because of patient confidentiality the trust will only explain such horrendous cases with written permission from patients or families. So you won’t hear the majority of cases - because people are too upset and some are superstitious about appearing to criticise their dedicated doctors and nurses, which is very convenient for managers who do not want the truth revealed.

Last week I was emailed by a woman whose mother was released, still vomiting, after general anaesthetic, with an open wound, after a kidney cancer operation. Discharged with no community or GP attention in place, her shocked and completely untrained daughter was handed syringes and told to administer her mother’s post-op injections.

The second was a man, discharged within a few hours of having his lymph nodes removed for cancer. When she got in touch, his wife was hysterical as his wounds were seeping and she had no idea what to do – again no acute hospital at home, and she had an Ofsted inspection the following day.

The third is an accident victim with a broken arm, broken hip and two broken legs. In spite of having to lie flat, they want him out of the Horton right now because of the insane closure of 10 trauma beds. With cases from Banbury and Oxford queuing up, managers were desperate for an address to ‘deliver’ him to. His working parents cannot cope with a multiply-injured young man on traction. What are families to do? What about those with no family?

These are three examples reported to me in the last week. What about post STP? Managers don’t know because it’s untried. What is Plan B? Where’s the way back when it proves unworkable?

Loss of the Horton’s maternity, acute medicine, paediatrics, trauma and A&E would cause utter chaos. The JR can’t cope now, and it too must reduce beds under the plan. As a foundation trust it will soon be offering 49% of beds to private patients. Just imagine.

On behalf of Banbury I urge HOSC to act in the interests of electors and refer any Horton downgrading to Jeremy Hunt.

Dr Liz Peretz ( Oxford Keep Our NHS Public)

The update on our STP in Item 8 this morning asks you to endorse huge scale cuts that would have devastating effects on the people you represent. You are the only people who can call this process into question So I will suggest you ask the following searching questions and tell the officers you do not accept their update, and demand further work.

These plans must be open now. (it has happened in other parts of the country). How else can you see how they work? And they must be whole system – including social care and public health – and across the whole ‘footprint’. There is no other way you can see how ‘sustainable’ they are and what impact they will have on your constituents.

Ask the officers if privately and hand on heart the numbers in their plans add up. We spend less per head on health than most of Europe – we should be expanding not cutting the budget. People will continue to get ill – you can’t cut demand in health. You can just increase suffering.

The plan needs to be made public and then consulted on in full, not in parts. We all know what effect changes in community care have on hospital care and vice versa. It has to be all out in the open together. As Victoria Prentis has said you must ‘get the consultation run as one process. It can’t work otherwise’ 
And you must assure yourselves that no binding contracts are signed off before the public has been consulted. (We have heard there may be some important signing on December 23rd) 
So – this is our plea for you to call on the officers to withdraw this update, halt procedures, not sign anything off in December, and come back with a full plan that all officers are sure will work, without having a deadly impact on the people of Oxfordshire. Also to resist any pressure to make binding contracts in secret ahead of time. And finally to have a consultation which is real, and which ensures our health and that of our children and grandchildren.

We have been on a program of STP (BOB/44) raise public awareness Stall events throughout Oxfordshire Towns and City along with constructive disruptive challenge to CCG , Oxfordshire Health Trusts , Healthwatch !! and Oxfordshire County Council HOSC !!! .

By MadAsHelll&NotGoingtoTakeitAnymore, Nov 18 2016 11:25AM

Dear friends

Our North West senior citizen correspondent Kevn Donovan writes, in a personal capacity, that following the Wirral Health and Wellbeing Board meeting today, that is exactly what he is!

He urges the following actions:

1.       Call upon Wirral MPs and Labour and other councillors to try to rein in the Chair of Wirral Health and Wellbeing Board and the runaway coach of the Sustainability and Transformation Plan.

2.      Urge all campaigners to publicly pillory this farce.

3.      Ask everyone to spread the word about STPs and get involved in local and national campaigns.

4.      Recommend Stop The Sustainability & Transformation Plans website  and join the local/national day of action on 3rd December EVENT LINK: HERE

5. see Kevin's campaign group (Defend Our NHS WIrral) Facebook page for details of our social and public protest meeting on 8th December

Kevin Donavan writes:

I have just walked out of the ‘meeting’ of Wirral’s Health & Wellbeing Board in disgust.

We reached the item on the Sustainability and Transformation Plan THE PLAN (we were due a verbal report from the Director for Health & Care) and the chair (Cllr Phil Davies, ‘labour’ leader of the Council) announced that the STP was not to be discussed because the CCG had not published the report yet.

This was met with protest and incredulity from the public gallery. The STP HAD been published THE PLAN (people coming into the meeting had already seen reports of its contents) but the AO/MD/Chair of the CCG claimed that ‘technical difficulties’ were delaying its release.

Davies refused point blank to accept public questions or comments and said the STP would be discussed at the next meeting. Next meeting? Date unknown but scheduled for 15 MARCH 2017.

Thus my rather inchoate conclusions at this stage:

1.       Davies is a disgrace. Apparently he prefers to negotiate with the Chinese Communist Party than the people of Wirral.

2.      To exclude any public discussion on this vital issue at this juncture is simply unconscionable.

3.      As STPs are due to be signed off very shortly AND as contracts are to be signed by 23rd December there is now no opportunity for public debate. Until he can prove otherwise the leader of Wirral Labour Party and Council is apparently aiding and abetting the Tories’ ‘slash, trash and privatise’ blitzkrieg.

4.      I cannot believe that a ‘labour’ politician is so cavalier in his attitude to our health and care services. Labour councils all over the country (yesterday in Sefton, today Cheshire West) are denouncing the STP process. My own Labour councillor has told me that Birkenhead Labour constituency party (to which Davies belongs) and all Wirral Labour councillors “are in full support of campaigning in support of the NHS.”

Can I urge fellow campaigners to:

1.       Call upon Wirral MPs and Labour and other councillors to try to rein in this man and the runaway coach of the STP.

2.      To publicly pillory this farce.

3.      Ask everyone to spread the word about STPs and get involved in local and national campaigns.

Your senior citizen correspondent – mad as hell and just not going to take it anymore!

Kevin Donovan

What's Aunty got to say?

Well... you know that this is not the only Health and Wellbeing Board to have failed its duties of diligence. All over the country I am sure the pattern is the same. That's why it is important to let other campaigners know. Just look in West Yorkshire too THE SAME PROBLEM

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Made a fanfare speech this week in Yorkshire saying if elected, he would "Stop'n'Search" the STPs - halting and reviewing them before they continued.


That's missing the point.


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Jonathan Ashworth MP

Shadow Sec. for Health

Dear Mr Ashworth