Hospital - ‘I am struggling to understand their ideas’

What a farce the sermon according to Dr Neil Parkes et al at the last CCG, (Clinical Commissioners) roadshow at the British Legion Hall in Louth.

We, (the public), were treated to another attempt to indoctrinate us with CCG policy.

The roadshow presenters being Victoria Atkins, (MP), Neil Parkes, (GP Louth), a chief nurse and a clinical commissioner.

Victoria Atkins MP, I presume recently alerted by ‘someone’ to the fact local people have issues about the hospital, should perhaps involve herself in constituency matters and temporarily suspend her parliamentary ambitions to support the Louth community.

As I know from my previous experiences of trying to save Louth Hospital, local people are apathetic; they believe all decisions about our hospital are decided before any consultations take place.

Of course, one can sympathise with their views and feelings given the evidence of past and present decisions by the commissioners which are clearly decided beforehand.

The evidence is clear, recently the CCGs and Dr Parkes have prepared Options 1 and 2 for our consideration. Presumably, Option 3 would/could have been to re-open Manby Ward, and perhaps, integrate an element of their ideas.

We, (the public), are assured that engagement before consultation is the CCG’s preferred option.

Personally I am struggling to understand how the CCG’s and Dr Parkes can have formed their ideas and policy throughout this hypothetical engagement.

Have they secretly been listening to us in our private conversations that, of course, are not private?

However, if that has been the case, they would have heard, if listening, as I have been, all the protestations of local residents.

Without exception, all the medical people/practitioners I know who are involved in these matters disagree with the CCG’s plans formed before consultation; perhaps when they have consulted us they may have to change their ‘plans’.

I take issue with Dr Parkes’ affirmation that “at the first moment we can get you home, with the adequate package of care, that has got be in the best interests”.

Does the patient have any choice in this matter?

I have been in Louth Hospital many times and have been relieved to be there as it has saved my life on numerous occasions.

Historically, I have never seen any evidence of commissioners being persuaded by our, (the public’s) views or ideas.

If they were guided by us, their jobs would be less secure and word ‘paternalistic’ may well lose its popularity.

For those of you who didn’t turn up, you missed the spectacle of Victoria Atkins asserting herself by prohibiting heckling in an almost non-existent voice - missing because she had been at the Conservative conference all week.

John Fee