Seniors concerned about re-organisation of NHS

Urgent meeting with MP held.

CONCERNS about the future of Honiton Community Hospital and local health services amid Government plans to scrap primary care trusts prompted Honiton Senior Council to seek an urgent meeting with MP Neil Parish.

A “useful discussion” has taken place and a verbal report is to be given to the council’s executive.

The council’s chairman, Tony Smith, told the group’s annual meeting, held at the British Legion Club, that local GPs will be expected to commission health services.

He said: “We invited a GP representative to address our meeting, but we were told this was not possible since Honiton doctors they were still considering the impact of Government changes:

“If the doctors cannot say how these changes will affect Honiton, what about patients? I am a member of the local Patients Committee and we do not yet know what will happen and yet these changes will take place next March and could have a huge impact on patient services.”

The meeting was told that, although the senior council had entered a partnership with the PCT, it had not been consulted about the changes.

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The council’s secretary, Tony Simpson, held up the NHS constitution and said: “The NHS constitution enshrines the rights of patients and their representatives to be consulted but these huge changes, which will alter the entire ethos and structure of the NHS.

“It appears these proposals have not been properly considered by those who will be most affected.”

Mr Simpson is concerned changes could lead to further privatisation of the NHS.