Councillors to quiz health chiefs about ‘secret’ plan for NHS in Brighton and Hove

Councillors are to question the health chiefs who are said to be drawing up a “secret” plan for the NHS in Brighton and Hove. There are fears that the local Sustainability and Transformation Plan (STP) will mean closures, spending cuts and privatisation.

Green members of Brighton and Hove City Council said that the plan should be subject to scrutiny, echoing a call by the campaign group Sussex Defend the NHS.

And now, the Green Party said, the plan will be examined at a special meeting of the Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee.

Green councillors said that they were deeply alarmed that the local plan was not being shared with the public or practitioners that they would most affect.

Councillor Phélim Mac Cafferty said: “We are pleased that through our work in council committees, plans for an STP in Brighton and Hove are now officially going to be forced into the light.

“By demanding that the NHS balances the books, the government is imposing cuts on our most vital, free health services. In Dorset, hospital beds are at risk. In Yorkshire, leaked plans show proposals to close wards. And elsewhere discussions are being had about closing A&E. We cannot have that here in Brighton and Hove and we cannot have these discussions behind closed doors. Make no mistake STP is in part a crippling set of political policies designed to force the NHS to concede many of its frontline services to private bidders and contractors.

Full story in Brighton & Hove News, 28 October 2016