Evening and weekend emergency children’s operations to end at three hospitals over lack of NHS staff

Plans have been given the go-ahead to stop some emergency children’s operations at evenings and weekends at three regional hospitals due to a lack of staff.

But officials say revised plans affecting Barnsley, Rotherham and Chesterfield hospitals will only affect around 65 patients a year, compared to the 1,500 it had been thought may be affected when more wide-ranging proposals were first put forward three years ago.

The change is being made due to a lack of specialist staff, with affected children being treated in Sheffield, Doncaster or Wakefield instead when required by specially trained ambulance crews.

Des Breen, medical director of the Working Together Partnership made up of regional NHS decision-makers, said: “The number of children affected by the proposed change has reduced significantly since the launch of the consultation and now only 65 children per year for three different specialities would have an operation elsewhere, in an out-of-hours emergency.

“By working this through during the consultation with our doctors, who have agreed to work together as a network, any change would support local teams to do as many operations as possible in a planned way. By working differently and moving a small number of children out of hours we would be able to make sure the very specialist skills needed are there for them around the clock.”


Will Cleary-Gray, director of sustainability and transformation for South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw, said further changes may be need in future to how hospital services work in the region.

Article from The Yorkshire Post, 30 June 2017