Other outpatient services also at risk

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Not only is the future of our minor injuries units at risk – other outpatient services may also be affected, the theme of a public consultation suggests.

Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), which is responsible for making decisions regarding the funding of NHS services in our area, is hosting the three public meetings, including one in Ely next Tuesday.

13645161_1217403578290423_643573433137850727_nThe CCG yesterday issued a press release, titled “Have your say on MIU and Outpatient services in East Cambs and Fenland” – suggesting that it’s not only our minor injury units that may face the chop.

The public consultation follows the leaking of a CCG report, recommending the closure of the three minor injury units at the Princess of Wales Hospital in Ely, as well as in Doddington and Wisbech.

The secret report was leaked to Northeast Cambridgeshire MP Steve Barclay by a whistleblower, who shared its contents with the media.

NE Cambs MP Steve Barclay was given the leaked report by a whistleblower.
NE Cambs MP Steve Barclay was given the leaked report by a whistleblower.

It sparked a #saveourminorinjuries campaign by Spotted in Ely and a petition by local resident Emma Watson. There has been a huge public outcry from local residents over fears that the minor injuries units may be axed, with numerous patients praising the service they have received from staff at the Ely unit.

Emma Watson
Emma Watson is leading a campaign to save our minor injury units.

But now other outpatient services may also be at risk – at a time when patients are being told to stay away from Addenbrookes Accident and Emergency Department for non-emergencies.

According to the CCG, a review of its urgent and emergency care facilities “highlighted that the three MIUs in the Cambridgeshire Fens (Ely, Wisbech and Doddington) do not meet national quality standards.”

In the press statement the CCG states: “No decisions have been made about the future of these services and we are looking at a number of options for urgent and minor injury services in East Cambs and Fenland. We need to think about how we can provide all these services in a safe, high quality way – and for this we need your help.”

The CCG is looking for a new provider to take on outpatient services in the area from April next year, after Cambridgeshire Community Services was given notice in May 2015.

“Working alongside local hospitals and other care providers, the CCG is looking at how Outpatient services may better serve local residents, as part of the Sustainability and Transformation Plan, to ensure the best overall care for patients.”

“We know how valued and important these services are to local people and we remain committed to engaging with staff, clinicians, patients, public and partners as we develop our thinking. All of this work is still at an early stage.”

Have your say at these public meetings:

• Tuesday 16 August, 6.30-8.30pm at The Maltings, Ship Lane, Ely, Cambridgeshire, CB7 4BB

• Tuesday 23 August, 7.00-9.00pm at Doddington Recreation Hall, Doddington Community Hospital, Benwick Road, Doddington, Cambridgeshire, PE15 0UG

• Thursday 25 August, 6.30-8.30pm at the Rosmini Centre, 69A Queens Road, Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, PE13 2PH