Community Voice Health

Our Campaigns
What is a campaign? Is it just normal activity to excess? PDF Print E-mail
Written by Joan Davis   
Saturday, 17 September 2016 15:36
The word "Campaigns" suggests major input and activitiy, at a level that we have not engaged in since our successful defence of Mount Vernon Cancer Centre many years ago.  Of course that success had many strands, of which our efforts were simply a part, but we believe that our mammoth petition had significance, making our contribution a factor in keeping Mount Vernon Cancer Centre on its present site.  Mercifully comparable effort has not been needed in the intervening years.

However we have not been idle and we have responded to each NHS challenge that has come our way. We are  routinely represented at Board Meetings in public of six major hospital trusts, three Clinical Commissioning Groups, NHS England when it meets in London and a range of Local Authority  committees, which helps to keep us up to date.  Reports on these meetings are available to members on request.  Looking at the current scene in 2016 gives a flavour of how we engage and the breadth of our concerns.  All the following issues are currently receiving actions of one kind or another:

  • Mount Vernon Cancer Centre's problem with cyberknife funding:  First in the UK to have this equipment due to a most generous donor, yet MVCC finds itself excluded from the list of centres that NHS England will from 1st September 2016 fund to use this equipment for brain metastises.  This robs MVCC of valuable income and causes much distress to many of its patients. We immediately jumped into action to protest and to urge a rethink.  See our letter to the Chief Executive of NHS Engand, at the bottom of this page.
  • Royal Brompton & Harefield NHS FT threatened with loss of chronic heart disease services:  This is a complex issue that we are tackling with gusto, in touch with the Trust and currently drafting letters to challenge and protest about the proposal, which could cripple other services at this Trust and cause immense problems for patients, particularly young people facing the difficult transition from child to adult services.  When our letters are sent they will be added to those at the bottom of this page.
  • Mental Health Funding:  Both Hillingdon and Harrow residents are poorly funded for mental health, near bottom in the country according to the latest official figures.  We have been protesting for years to Hillingdon CCG, which is now starting to improve its allocation for this important aspect of heaalth care.  Now we are addressing Harrow CCG.  Our initial letter to the Harrow CCG Chairman is attached below.
  • Northwood and Pinner Community Hospital site:  We have for years been active in defence of this site, a war memorial to those who died in WWI, with every penny originally raised by public donation.  We contend there is a moral obligation for the site to continue serving the local community, if not for health services then some other service for young or old or frail amongst local people.  We are workng with the local MP and GPs on this.
  • Harrow Healthwatch:  Following complaints, Harrow Council set up an enquiry into Harrow Healthwatch, which over three years has consumed £1/2m of taxpayers' money.  The enquiry has reported but the report is considered confidential.  We are calling for the report to be published and a public meeting to be held for the findings to be discussed.  We are asking the two local MPs to help us.

So the above activities keep us busy, although they are hardly campaigns.  They are just robust responses to the challenges we face.  Our members always keep us on our toes.

Last Updated on Monday, 19 September 2016 11:29
Activities November 2014 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Joan Davis   
Saturday, 29 November 2014 15:26
In early November 2014 we were active on a number of issues

NHS funding:  In response to our concerns our Individual Member, Prof. Mervyn Stone, former Head of Statistical Science at University College London, has worked on critical analysis of NHS funding formulas since 2002. He recently analysed data from the National Audit Office report Funding Healthcare: Making allocations to local areas and submitted his findings to the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee, which reviewed that report on 20th October. His findings have now been extended in a paper on the Civitas website – there is a link to Mervyn’s paper from the Home Page of our own website . Members without internet access can borrow a paper copy on request.

b.      Harrow and Hillingdon quoted as having the longest delays in dementia diagnosis in London: A BBC television programme, on 13th October, broadcast this assertion. We are awaiting comments from Harrow and Hillingdon Clinical Commissioning Groups. Central & North West London FT, which provides the dementia diagnosis service in both Boroughs, tells us that the average wait nationally is 4/5 weeks. In Harrow the wait is 14 weeks. In Hillingdon the wait is 7 weeks.

c.      Mental Health. Hillingdon CCG’s October Board Meeting received a written question from our member Jeanne Smith, delegate for Hayes and Harlington Old Peoples’ Welfare Association, about the need for improvement in local mental health services. A detailed answer is to be provided.

d.      Harrow Council’s budget consultation questionnaire: We have responded to this consultation, as agreed at our November Council Meeting.

e.      Hillingdon Council’s refusal to sign off the pooled Better Care Fund budget plan: (From Health Service Journal 7 Nov. 2014) Hillingdon Council’s Health & Wellbeing Board has refused to ratify its Better Care Fund plan after failing to reach an agreement with Hillingdon CCG on how to use part of the proposed pooled budget. This follows a dispute over how new costs attached to the Care Act would be funded. The Council had expected to receive around £800k routed through Hillingdon CCG via the Better Care Fund specifically to meet those costs.

The £5.3bn national Better Care Fund includes £135m of funding for implementing the Care Act, which imposes new financial burdens on councils in the form of increased care assessments, information, advice and support for carers.

We asked for details behind this dispute and understand that Hillingdon Council believes it should receive monies currently withheld by Hillingdon CCG. It is therefore seeking the guidance of the Secretary of State on how the national funding should be distributed locally. We await further news, but will be asking Hillingdon Clinical Commissioning Group for its comments.


Northwood and Pinner Community Hospital site October 2014 PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Joan Davis   
Monday, 13 October 2014 18:45
Hillingdon Clinical Commissioning Group has stated it has no NHS use for the Northwood and Pinner Community Hospital site. Nick Hurd MP has been working behind the scenes to encourage interest in developing the site for community use.

NHS Property Services is now responsible for the site.  It is offering the site to public sector organisations for 40 days, before considering other options.  If there is no public sector interest, the site will be up for sale.

We will fight in every possible way to enable this war memorial site to serve local people – so watch this spot!

We will be monitoring these issues closely.

Written by Joan Davis   
Sunday, 03 August 2014 19:36
a.      Proposed sharing of lay members between Brent, Harrow and Hillingdon CCGs: Healthwatch England has now acknowledged receipt of our letters, but further response is awaited.

b.      Access to Paul Strickland Scanner Centre: At the time of writing this news-sheet we have had no further response from the Chairmen of either Harrow or Hillingdon Clinical Commissioning Groups.

c.      Transfer of NHS services from hospitals into the community: As agreed at our May meeting we have written to local Clinical Commissioning Groups about our concerns and copied letters to MPs and Healthwatch in Harrow, Hillingdon and SW Herts. Copies will be available at our June meeting.

d.      Representation: Since our last news-sheet, representatives’ reports have been received about East & North Herts Hospitals NHS Trust, Hillingdon Clinical Commissioning Group, The Hillingdon Hospitals NHS FT and North West London Hospitals NHS Trust.

e.      Future guest-speakers: We have invited Dr Rowan Hillson to speak in the Autumn and invited NHS England to send a speaker about the services we can expect from GP surgeries.

Last Updated on Sunday, 03 August 2014 19:39
Concenrns about moving hospital services into the community PDF Print E-mail
Written by Joan Davis   
Sunday, 11 May 2014 08:29

  At the May 2014 meeting of The Community Voice members expressed concern about the current NHS policy of moving hospital services into the community.  It was agreed that the Chairman would write to all the surrounding Clinical Commissioning Groups - Harrow CCG, Herts Valleys CCG and Hillingdon CCG - to report those concerns

The subsequent letter was personalised for each of the three CCGs - the version to the Chairman of Harrow CCG is attached.  It was copied to seven local MPs and the three Healthwatch in Harrow, Hillingdon and Hertfordshire

FileDescriptionFile size
Download this file (To Dr Kelshiker May 2014 re moving services out of hospitals.pdf)To CCGs May 2014 re moving acute services into the community 37 Kb

Last Updated on Thursday, 29 May 2014 20:21
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