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MAD AS HELL BLOG

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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 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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