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Statement in support of the FoAHSW programme

Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust has confirmed that it welcomed the publication of the West Midlands Clinical Senate report into the model put forward by the Future of Acute Hospital Services in Worcestershire and is committed to the programme.

This is the second independent clinical report which has endorsed the need for change and accepted that the Programme Board’s proposals to centralise inpatient children’s services, consultant-led births and emergency surgery at the Worcestershire Royal Hospital.  The Trust recognises that there is still work to do on the emergency department model but publication of the report allows the reconfiguration programme under the leadership of Worcestershire’s three CCGs to move forward.

Patient safety is at the very heart of the proposals put forward by the Programme Board and we are pleased the Senate has recognised the need to make changes to ensure safe and sustainable services for the whole of Worcestershire.

We recognise there will always be differences of opinion whenever service change is proposed, and it is the primary responsibility of the Programme Board to ensure that all views are represented and taken into account when agreeing the details around the proposed future model. As a Trust Board, we absolutely share the frustration being expressed on the delays to the process. However, we now look forward to working with our colleagues from all 3 Clinical Commissioning Groups, the ambulance service and other partners to ensure that there is a clinically safe and sustainable model for patients in Worcestershire.

The detailed work on the countywide A & E model will now be led by newly appointed ED consultant, Dr Gary Ward in his role as lead for urgent and emergency care. He will lead a working group consisting of emergency medicine clinicians including experts from outside Worcestershire and local GPs, working in co-operation with the West Midlands Clinical Senate, to define the model. He will take account of the Keogh Urgent and Emergency Care Review. The second stage of the Keogh Review, which is due to be published in the near future, will provide a framework that will guide and support commissioners, clinicians and providers in the transformation of urgent and emergency care services.