FFF….the next steps
Friday 30th January, 2009
Proposals to review the Fit for the Future decisions on acute services have been agreed by West Sussex Primary Care Trust's Board.
The PCT put the process “on hold” while Royal West Sussex NHS Trust (RWS) and Worthing and Southlands Hospitals NHS Trust (WaSH) considered a proposal to merge. Now that the two Trust Boards have agreed to go ahead with the merger, the PCT is fulfilling its commitment to review the original decisions in relation to maternity services, inpatient paediatrics and emergency surgery. The review will take into account any important new national and local information and evidence that has arisen since the original decisions were made.
The review process has been discussed with the West Sussex Health Overview Scrutiny Committee (HOSC), senior clinicians and managers. It will involve bringing together groups of doctors, nurses and other senior staff from across the county to ensure that the NHS delivers safe, high quality, accessible services for the long term.
John Wilderspin, Chief Executive of West Sussex PCT, said “We always said we would return to the discussion about how to develop healthcare services in West Sussex to give people in the county the very best, and that are designed to last. We will now review the Fit for the Future decisions, looking across the whole of the county, taking into consideration any new issues that have arisen since the original decisions were made in relation to maternity services, inpatient paediatrics and emergency surgery.
“It is important that we work with our partners – the local Trusts and local clinicians – in this process, and we will be doing exactly that. We have already been in discussion with the West Sussex HOSC about the review and will continue to work closely with the West Sussex Joint Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee throughout the process. It is important we take into consideration views raised during previous public consultations and the views of patients and the public now.
“The key principles underpinning Fit for the Future will remain throughout the review: to have services that are clinically sustainable, affordable, deliverable and accessible. That is what we have always wanted, and that will continue to be the focus of our work throughout a review of the original decisions.”
The review will start next month and its recommendations will be considered by the PCT Board before a final decision will be made. We expect the process will be completed later this year.