Wednesday, November 26, 2014

GP's concerns on West Cumberland Hospital

Twenty-five local GPs from Copeland and Allerdale have written to the Whitehaven News expressing concerns about proposals for services at West Cumberland Hospital, particularly maternity and paediatrics.

The doctors said: “We are deeply concerned, in light of recent comments, that the medical director of our acute trust neither appears to recognise the special challenges of providing maternity services in our area, nor be prepared to await the advice of the expert panel that the Clinical Commissioning Group has brought together to review these issues.”

The full text of the letter can be read on the Whitehaven News website at

A spokesperson for North Cumbria University Hospitals Trust responded as follows:

“Our very firm intention is that more, not less, patients will be treated in West Cumbria in the future. We are already starting to see this happen and even following the important safety changes made in 2013 to transfer high risk surgery, we have seen an overall increase in emergency admissions at West Cumberland Hospital, from 11,167 to 11,327, over the past year. We are also seeing the number of planned operations and day case procedures increase and have seen over 7,500 more diagnostic tests take place at West Cumberland Hospital in the past year.
“The new West Cumberland Hospital will continue to have a 24-hour A&E, medical admissions, intensive care as well as paediatric and maternity care. That is without question. We must, however, make sure that all of our services are as safe as possible and we know that some services are not as safe as they should be.

“From next week we will be engaging with all stakeholders about our ideas to improve safety and solve some of the longstanding problems that have never been truly addressed in North Cumbria over many years. We look forward to hearing from all GPs as part of this"


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