Gloucestershire STP ‘riven with holes’, warn campaigners

Gloucestershire NHS campaigners have claimed that crucial financial information about the county’s STP is being kept secret from the public and councillors, urging elected officials to reject the plan if key figures and projections are not revealed.

The STP, published by Gloucestershire CCG in November, set out the CCG’s strategy to reduce costs and improve care in Gloucestershire while attempting to tackle the county’s £226m deficit.

In an open letter to all county councillors, Stroud Against The Cuts (SATC) called the plan’s budgets “riven with holes”, warning that the CCG’s plans provide no information on projected changes to staff levels, bed numbers, sales of assets or trust deficits, and demanded greater transparency on how changes will affect services in Gloucestershire.

“We note with deep concern that the plan contains no guarantee that current levels of hospital provision will be protected. We further note with deep concern that assumptions are made throughout the plan that may well undermine the provision of hospital and other NHS care in Gloucestershire in future,” said the letter, signed by SATC’s chair James Beecher and co-ordinator Caroline Molloy.

“Given the lack of guarantees about estates and workforce, the suspicion must be that these holes [in the capital budget] will be filled with further cuts and sell offs of our much loved and vital hospitals, and greater reliance on private patients.”

Full story in National Health Executive 23 December 2016