Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust to receive £1 million of funding (From Bromsgrove Advertiser)
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Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust to receive £1 million of funding
1:30pm Tuesday 10th September 2013 in Local
IT has been announced that Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust will be receiving £1 million of funding.
The extra funds, announced today by Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt, are part of radical changes to improve care for vulnerable older people and alleviate pressure on A&E.
It includes specific plans to help county A&E departments such as Redditch’s Alexandra Hospital deal with extra winter cases.
Accident and emergency wards were run ragged last winter as unprecedented demand caused months of bed pressures, missed targets and wards packed full of patients waiting for treatment.
The situation got so bad that doctors from Worcestershire Royal Hospital told NHS bosses that they could no longer guarantee patient safety.
The Health Secretary said: “This winter is going to be tough– that’s why the Government is acting now to make sure patients receive a great, safe service, even with the added pressures the cold weather brings.
“But this is a serious, long-term problem, which needs fundamental changes to equip our A&Es for the future.”
Fundamental changes mean joined-up care spanning GPs, social care, and A&E departments, all overseen by a named GP.
Many vulnerable older people end up in A&E simply because they cannot get the care and support they need anywhere else.
It is hoped these changes will reduce the need for repeated trips to A&E, and speed up diagnosis, treatment and discharge home again, when patients do need to go to hospital.
Redditch MP Karen Lumley, who recently met with hospital bosses to discuss workload during the winter, welcomed the news but said more could have been done.
She said: “As the cold weather nears we all agree that the trust needs to be ready to cope with the extra challenges that occur.
“Just this year we have seen the outbreak of norovirus which placed huge extra financial strain on the hospital.
“£1 million is a very significant sum and will make a difference but with the trust heavily indebted, I am not convinced that this sum will be big enough to cope should we have another bout of norovirus or severe cold weather.”
The MP added: “Every extra penny allocated to the trust to help with the winter pressures is clearly good news but we all agreed that we wanted to make the case very clearly for a settlement that is equivalent to similar sized trusts across England which I do not feel that this money represents.”
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