Councillors are being kept updated with a weekly stakeholder briefing on the Children’s Hearts Campaign. Leicester Hospitals have met with NHS England to discuss their concerns at proposals to reduce the number of hospitals providing the most specialised operations on children and babies born with complex heart problems.
Liz Kendall MP has commented that “Decisions must be based on what’s best for children and the latest evidence on clinical outcomes shows that the East Midlands Congenital Heart Centre is one of the best performing surgical centres in England.”
Concerns about the loss of this service need to be put in the wider context of Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland’s ‘Sustainablity and Transformation Plan’ (STP). This 30-page document will be finalised by the end of October. The STP will include detailed information on how the local NHS intends to manage its finance, activity, bed capacity and workforce.
We currently spend £1.6bn on NHS services across the City, County and Rutland. By the end of the STP 5 year plan funding will have gone up to £1.8bn. Due to an increasing and ageing population the NHS will find itself about £450m short of the money needed. The Local Authorities will be ~£70m short of the funds they need too.
Most of the STP proposals involve trying to find better ways for GPs, hospitals and social care to work together. More controversially, the plan includes moving the acute hospital services onto two sites (LRI and Glenfield). This depends on securing more than £400m of external capital investment.
No decisions will be made until after formal public consultation. So watch this space!