Despite Wyre Forest Tory MP Mark Garnier’s bluster in the press about how new management will sort out Worcs NHS difficulties, it seems the Care Quality Commission (CQC) see things differently.

The CQC has kept Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust in special measures with a damning indictment of all our local hospitals.

Stephen Brown Labour Press Officer said “The only praise is for hard pressed frontline staff pushed to the limit to cope, yet cope they do, and continue to do their best under a failing regime underpinned by a serious lack of resources”.

New management has clearly failed to change things or make significant improvements. That is because there is insufficient funding and nothing short of proper resourcing will change that.

Stephen Brown went on to say “This is part of a wider picture of Tory NHS neglect and makes Kidderminster vulnerable if the Tory Naylor Report is actioned and they sell off premises to prop up revenue streams to keep services afloat. Tory quick fix schemes designed to hand over NHS estates to their privateer mates is not good enough. This would have destroyed Garnier’s hopes of re-election if the public knew the true scale of the crisis in our local NHS. A crisis he and his party have overseen. That’s why we need another election and soon. The Tories have no answers to any of the big issues facing our country”.

The Trust is presented as having a reactive and not pro-active approach and it demonstrates a fundamental underlying dysfunction that simply changing management won’t address. It needs more money and a proper strategy to deliver NHS services across the piece that only Labour can provide.

Resourcing issues do play a major part and it is noted that waiting times, radiography, referral times (cancer) and mental health provision all have major failings. These are all things Wyre Forest Labour and its activists have been concerned about and raised at various times. Members by the coach load went to demonstrate in London in March about it. Who’s listening because Garnier and his Health Secretary Hunt are most certainly not?

It is most concerning for the whole county and disappointing for Wyre Forest residents that Kidderminster is rated inadequate too. It puts Kidderminster under severe scrutiny that may impact its long term survival if the Trust focuses all its efforts on one site (Worcester) to gain the improvements needed by raising funds on asset sales to pay for wider clinical improvements.

Worcestershire NHS is facing further funding problems too. Tory STP cuts of £123 million must be found for a Worcs NHS already £37million in the red. What’s happening is simply unsustainable.

Labour will carry on the fight to save our NHS and hold Garnier and the Tories to account. The clock is already ticking down on their time in Government just days after the election, and the sooner they’re out the better – for the many – as the few have had it all their own way for far too long.

Stephen Brown

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