The clock’s ticking for people who want to have their say on £450 million proposals to transform acute hospital and maternity services in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland.
A public consultation which launched on 28th September closes on 21st December giving residents just 26 days to give their feedback.
The consultation focuses on plans to improve patient care and achieve better patient outcomes. It’s based on services delivered at the three main hospitals in Leicester, run by University Hospitals of Leicester (UHL) NHS Trust, as well as services delivered at the midwifery-led unit at St Mary’s Hospital, Melton Mowbray.
People can have their say in a number of ways, including at a number of on-line events.
Under the proposals:
- 139 more hospital beds would be created.
- All acute care would be moved to the Leicester Royal Infirmary (in the city centre) and to Glenfield Hospital (on the outskirts of Leicester on Groby Road). Acute care includes patients receiving treatment for severe injury or illness, urgent medical conditions, or during recovery from surgery.
- A new major planned care treatment centre would be created at the Glenfield Hospital.
- This treatment centre, along with the delivery of more outpatient appointments virtually or closer to where patients live in the community, would reduce the number of patients attending the Leicester Royal Infirmary site by more than half a million per year – reducing city centre traffic.
- The creation of the first dedicated single-site children’s hospital in the East Midlands, based in the Kensington Building.
- A new maternity hospital developed on the same site.
- Two intensive care units with 100 beds in total (almost double the current number) would be developed at the Leicester Royal Infirmary and Glenfield Hospital. The investment would also see the creation of welcome centres to help people find their way around the hospital sites, modernised wards, operating theatres and imaging facilities, and additional car parking.
- The creation of a new community health campus with non-acute services would be created on the site of Leicester General Hospital, in Evington.
- The proposals include in-patient beds for those recovering from a stroke, new GP direct access to x-rays and scans to help diagnose patients’ conditions quicker, and the retention of the existing diabetes centre of excellence.
- A new primary care urgent treatment centre with observation facilities, community outpatient facilities for a range of mental and physical conditions, and additional primary care services could also be created.
- A potential relocation of the midwifery-led unit at St Mary’s Hospital, Melton Mowbray to the Leicester General Hospital campus – ensuring that the service is accessible to many more women living across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland, whilst enabling them to be closer to specialist medical support should they need it. Currently less than three births per week take place at the unit.
- A greater use of hydrotherapy pools in the community, replacing use of the hydrotherapy pool at Leicester General Hospital.
Andrew Furlong, Medical Director, University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust said: “Many people have had their say already on the proposals that would transform the way healthcare is delivered in our area. Every piece of feedback we have received is vital, but we want as many people as possible to have their say.
“These are their hospitals and their services and it is only right that they have a chance to give us their opinion and thoughts on the proposals that have been brought forward. The NHS is an amazing institution, that saves lives every day. This year, as we continue to fight Covid-19 we have seen just how loved it is by the public and how integral it is to our society but the way our hospitals are configured is based on historical decisions, in a world that no longer exists. Healthcare has changed, the demand has grown, and people are living for longer with long-term health conditions.
“Our current configuration isn’t fit for purpose. We have old buildings, with services spread too thinly across three sites and in ways that make delivering care very challenging. These proposals will help us to offer the highest quality, state-of-the art healthcare services that patients deserve, will be fit for future generations as well as being able to cope better under increased pressures, like we have seen relentlessly this year,” he added.
Andy Williams, Chief Executive for the Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland clinical commissioning groups urged people to have their say: “We would value feedback on these proposals for anyone who has an interest in health services, whether that’s clinicians, patients, carers, the public and of course public and patient representative groups. This is their opportunity to have their say and be listened to. This is not a tick box exercise, we genuinely want the feedback we receive to help shape the proposals, whether they agree with the plans or think we can improve them. The full consultation document and questionnaire survey are available on the website: http://www.betterhospitalsleicester.nhs.uk and I would urge people to take a look and have their say.”
Further information about the proposals and how to comment can also be obtained by telephoning 0116 295 0750 or emailing beinvolved@LeicesterCityCCG.nhs.uk