Thursday 8th August 2019
The Doctor-led proposals, which have been set out by the Derby and Derbyshire Clinical Commissioning Group, will see resources redirected to ensure rehabilitation services for our elderly residents truly match their needs, helping them to lead full and active lives after an illness.
Whilst the number of beds at the hospital itself will reduce from 24 to 16, it will still retain the operational flexibility to increase capacity to 18 beds should that be required. In additional, the number of supportive care beds delivered in settings such as care homes will increase from three to 11.
The proposals will also see the facilities for residents being cared for in their own homes rise significantly, resulting in 37 rather than the current 27 residents being cared for in this way.
Crucially this type of specialist health provision is designed to ensure that local residents, such as those who may be vulnerable or elderly, receive the same high-quality care as they would in hospital, but delivered in the comfort of their own home or a location where they can receive more appropriate rehabilitative care.
This model of out of hospital care is supported by clinical evidence which suggests that it can significantly speed up a person’s recovery and, unlike a stay in hospital, reduce the need for intensive rehabilitation.
Taken together, these proposals will significantly improve the patient pathway and help people recover more quickly in the most appropriate setting for their condition.
We must also remember that our hospital is more than just beds. It serves our community as an outpatient hub and has a brilliant Diagnostic and Treatment Centre, as well as the Minor Injuries Unit.
Our hospital remains an integral part of the wider Erewash health economy, with the Trust investing significantly in recent years to improve facilities, including the upgrade of consultation rooms. Its theatres are recognised as having state of the art facilities that other hospitals lack.
Let me be clear, contrary to the vicious rumours being circulated, primarily by the Labour Party, Ilkeston Community Hospital is not and will never close whilst I remain Erewash’s Member of Parliament.
In respect of the public campaign set up to oppose the proposed changes, whilst of course I welcome public engagement, it is clear that some elements of this campaign are only interested in playing politics with this vital public service. This, sadly, has led to a breakdown in public order as witnessed during a recent protest which resulted in major roads through our town being disrupted and the police having to use valuable resources to control the situation.
Whilst I respect the rights of people to protest peacefully, I condemn the tone of language used by some of the campaigners and the use of extreme measures including intimidation, which I believe is counterproductive to their cause. I am sure you will agree that any self-respecting member of the public should not be involved in such actions.
I would like to reiterate my commitment to supporting the hospital and our NHS more broadly and will continue to hold talks with the CCG and the Acute and Community Trusts to ensure that the decisions they take are truly in the best interests of our Community and are based on evidenced outcomes.
No one person has a monopoly on our hospital, indeed myself and my staff have all experienced the quality of care provided by the dedicated team of staff and I will continue to defend these services as your local MP.