Lewisham Hospital and South London Healthcare Trust final proposals revealed - update

This Is Local London: Matthew Kershaw Matthew Kershaw

LEWISHAM Hospital will still lose its A&E under final health proposals revealed today.

Despite thousands of people protesting and wide opposition from health professionals and politicians, trust administrator Matthew Kershaw has announced there were no "viable alternative solutions" to his initial recommendations.

Under the plans:

  • Queen Mary's Hospital in Sidcup will become a "hub" for health and social care.
  • Funds will be provided to cover costs of the PFI contracts at Queen Elizabeth in Woolwich and the Princess Royal University Hospital (PRU) in Farnborough.
  • Obstetric maternity care will be based at King's, the PRU, Queen Elizabeth and St Thomas's. Lewisham will have a midwifery-led unit.
  • Lewisham will become an urgent care centre.
  • The PRU will be acquired by King's College Hospital NHS Trust.
  • Queen Elizabeth Hospital will come together with Lewisham to create a new health trust.
  • £74.9m in efficiency savings, including staff cuts and operational savings.
  • Dissolution of the trust on June 1. A three year transformation programme would be funded by £55.3m in Government money.

South London Healthcare NHS Trust was the first ever to be placed in administration after it started losing around £1.3 million a week.

Draft proposals to downgrade Lewisham's A&E and close its maternity services, along with making Sidcup's Queen Mary's Hospital a health campus, were revealed last year.

Trust special administrator Matthew Kershaw submitted his final report to health secretary Jeremy Hunt yesterday.

He is due to make a decision by February 1.

Mr Kershaw denied today that the people of Lewisham - whose opposition had been overwhelming - had been ignored.

He said: "We make absolutely clear reference [in the report] to the strength of feeling from the people of Lewisham.

"We've been absolutely true to what people have said."

The adminstrator added: "There isn't a viable alternative solution made through that process."

He also admitted that the hospital system was currently under pressure, and said that changes would have to occur in the other sites, including an expansion of capacity at Queen Elizabeth and the Princess Royal, before action at Lewisham.

Mr Kershaw said: "I have said consistently that the status quo is not an option, and I believe these final, refined recommendations are the right ones, although I appreciate that some people will find them difficult to accept.

"I do believe that if implemented fully they will help deliver safe, high quality, affordable and sustainable services for the people of south east London into the future."

To see the full report go to www.tsa.nhs.uk

'Travesty'

Tony O'Sullivan, consultant paediatrician at the hospital, said the move would have a "devastating" effect on the trust.

"They are talking about shutting down all the emergency services - which really does rip out the heart of the hospital - and people will look elsewhere for their medical care," he said.

John O'Donohue, consultant physician at Lewisham, branded the proposals a "travesty" and said the special administrator had "ignored the views of experts and the public".

He warned: "If services at a successful and well-run hospital like Lewisham are closed due to problems at a neighbouring trust, then no hospital in London, or the country, is safe."

'Seriously flawed'

Mayor of Lewisham Sir Steve Bullock said: "I feared all along that this process was set up to rush through ill-conceived proposals with no intention of listening to the views of local people, the people who use local health services and the people who work in our local health services. Today we have the confirmation.

"Mr Kershaw’s ears were closed. These were seriously flawed proposals in draft and they remain seriously flawed and dangerous proposals. The Secretary of State should reject them.

“I urge everyone who can to join the march on January 26 to show Jeremy Hunt how strongly we feel as a community about these proposals.”

A spokesman for Lewisham Healthcare NHS Trust said: "Clearly, we cannot comment in detail on the report as we have not received a copy in advance, and need time to analyse it fully.

"We do support merging with Queen Elizabeth, which is one of the recommendations.  However, we do not agree with the TSA’s prescriptive approach to service change, which would result in local emergency services being closed and maternity services being downgraded.

"As a successful organisation, we have said we would like to determine the future of services ourselves, and we would include proper engagement with stakeholders and the public.

"We are grateful for the support we have received from patients, the public, GPs, healthcare professionals, MPs and partners."

Unsion branch secretary at Lewisham Hospital Conroy Lawrence said: "Staff are shocked but not surprised by the report.

"We know the overwhelming majority of clinical and public responses opposed closure of Lewisham Hospital A&E and it is therefore fundamentally undemocratic to simply ignore that mandate as this report effectively does"

"We have every reason to believe the people of Lewisham will now redouble their efforts to defend what is a popular and well respected hospital, against what is nothing less than a political attack upon an inner city community."

Comments (24)

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8:42am Tue 8 Jan 13

Polly Staight says...

And after a Three month period of public discussion...

...We are going to go ahead and shaft them again.
And after a Three month period of public discussion... ...We are going to go ahead and shaft them again. Polly Staight

10:23am Tue 8 Jan 13

greenjack says...

and I understand he has overspent investigating their overspend!! what a hypocritical waste of public money on something that has already been decided!!
and I understand he has overspent investigating their overspend!! what a hypocritical waste of public money on something that has already been decided!! greenjack

11:32am Tue 8 Jan 13

hansmum says...

"Matthew Kershaw has announced there were no "viable alternative solutions" to his initial recommendations" Mr Kershaw had no intention of listening to the public. He was to go ahead with his proposals whatever the public had to say or suggest.
"Matthew Kershaw has announced there were no "viable alternative solutions" to his initial recommendations" Mr Kershaw had no intention of listening to the public. He was to go ahead with his proposals whatever the public had to say or suggest. hansmum

11:45am Tue 8 Jan 13

Gypo.Joe says...

Bend over grab a hold of ya ankles !!
Bend over grab a hold of ya ankles !! Gypo.Joe

12:31pm Tue 8 Jan 13

Tmcd says...

As everyone says above, what was the point of the public discussion. The proposed closure of Lewisham A&E has been objected to by near enough all local councils and the public. It would be interesting to know what the cost difference would be between an "urgent care centre" and an A&E department?
As everyone says above, what was the point of the public discussion. The proposed closure of Lewisham A&E has been objected to by near enough all local councils and the public. It would be interesting to know what the cost difference would be between an "urgent care centre" and an A&E department? Tmcd

12:49pm Tue 8 Jan 13

greenjack says...

what has happened to the comments?
what has happened to the comments? greenjack

12:51pm Tue 8 Jan 13

greenjack says...

OK, I can see them again now :)
OK, I can see them again now :) greenjack

1:06pm Tue 8 Jan 13

goldenbroomboy says...

What about Beckenham Beacon?
What about Beckenham Beacon? goldenbroomboy

1:19pm Tue 8 Jan 13

Virtual-Monster says...

The biggest failure in all of this is that once again we are placing money above health of the people who live in Greenwich, Lewisham and Bexley.

Year on year, health care provision should be improving not being cut to the bone by bean counters who are just worried about pleasing their political masters.

We need improved health services in this area run by people who actually care about the people who need to access services.

Stop making health about money, health care should be about just that HEALTH and CARE!
The biggest failure in all of this is that once again we are placing money above health of the people who live in Greenwich, Lewisham and Bexley. Year on year, health care provision should be improving not being cut to the bone by bean counters who are just worried about pleasing their political masters. We need improved health services in this area run by people who actually care about the people who need to access services. Stop making health about money, health care should be about just that HEALTH and CARE! Virtual-Monster

1:41pm Tue 8 Jan 13

greenjack says...

goldenbroomboy wrote:
What about Beckenham Beacon?
The proposal is that Beckenham Beacon is established as a Planned
Care Centre. I think this then means that other services are transfered to PRU.
[quote][p][bold]goldenbroomboy[/bold] wrote: What about Beckenham Beacon?[/p][/quote]The proposal is that Beckenham Beacon is established as a Planned Care Centre. I think this then means that other services are transfered to PRU. greenjack

2:55pm Tue 8 Jan 13

Margaret Smith says...

So no surprise... This Consultation was a joke from Day one, and a shame as ray woolford from People before profit stated at a number of public meetings. The fight goes on, Join the Mass rally on Saturday 26 January and get more active with Save the Hospital Campaign. People Before profit have organised an open top bus to drive around South London to boost numbers for the rally,Offer to Help via People Before profit website, or read Rays brillient community Blog; Lewishamcampaignerbl
ogspot. Do not except this decision, we must fight to save our Hospital
So no surprise... This Consultation was a joke from Day one, and a shame as ray woolford from People before profit stated at a number of public meetings. The fight goes on, Join the Mass rally on Saturday 26 January and get more active with Save the Hospital Campaign. People Before profit have organised an open top bus to drive around South London to boost numbers for the rally,Offer to Help via People Before profit website, or read Rays brillient community Blog; Lewishamcampaignerbl ogspot. Do not except this decision, we must fight to save our Hospital Margaret Smith

3:14pm Tue 8 Jan 13

Rev. Sue Scottley says...

This is utterly appalling.

I am inclined to blame PFI and the management culture in the NHS/government.

There needs to be an independent inquiry into PFI and the government must find a way to save the NHS from these ridiculous arrangements, and the poeple who agreed to them even though future costs were astronomical should be shot. I mean jailed.
This is utterly appalling. I am inclined to blame PFI and the management culture in the NHS/government. There needs to be an independent inquiry into PFI and the government must find a way to save the NHS from these ridiculous arrangements, and the poeple who agreed to them even though future costs were astronomical should be shot. I mean jailed. Rev. Sue Scottley

3:50pm Tue 8 Jan 13

greenjack says...

greenjack wrote:
and I understand he has overspent investigating their overspend!! what a hypocritical waste of public money on something that has already been decided!!
Taken from the Bexley Times website;
"Mr Hunt originally gave Mr Kershaw £4m but agreed an £1.1m extension last month. Of the total spend £3.1m has been splashed on consultants including lead contractor McKinsey."
Disgraceful !!
[quote][p][bold]greenjack[/bold] wrote: and I understand he has overspent investigating their overspend!! what a hypocritical waste of public money on something that has already been decided!![/p][/quote]Taken from the Bexley Times website; "Mr Hunt originally gave Mr Kershaw £4m but agreed an £1.1m extension last month. Of the total spend £3.1m has been splashed on consultants including lead contractor McKinsey." Disgraceful !! greenjack

4:28pm Tue 8 Jan 13

gorgeousuk says...

I am really sad and disappointed after there was so much public opinion against the downgrading of the hospital, which it ultimately is. The hospital was awarded university status and has a brilliant reputation for its maternity and child care as well as a new wing built only a few years ago. I am disgusted and angry at the fact that the proposals still stand, but not intimately surprised since the government wants rid of the NHS so the worse they make it the more viable scrapping the NHS will be for them.
I am really sad and disappointed after there was so much public opinion against the downgrading of the hospital, which it ultimately is. The hospital was awarded university status and has a brilliant reputation for its maternity and child care as well as a new wing built only a few years ago. I am disgusted and angry at the fact that the proposals still stand, but not intimately surprised since the government wants rid of the NHS so the worse they make it the more viable scrapping the NHS will be for them. gorgeousuk

5:05pm Tue 8 Jan 13

Steve7 says...

Better not have an accident or get taken ill in South East London.

No viable alternative indeed, I can think of one: reduce the number of adminstrators and managers, and stop employing temporary staff/contractors
Better not have an accident or get taken ill in South East London. No viable alternative indeed, I can think of one: reduce the number of adminstrators and managers, and stop employing temporary staff/contractors Steve7

9:03pm Tue 8 Jan 13

Peony says...

What does it take to make people like Kershaw listen? Is it his remit to carve up the NHS regardless of local opposition? If so why did he say on the BBC news today that it is still in the consultation stage. Does consultation mean asking stake holders (us) what we think or is 'consultation' another way of sealing a 'done deal'? If it is the latter then it is a shameful abuse of power.

The grotesquely overpaid inept NHS administrators are responsible for the financial state of our local hospitals together with Labour and Conservative governments who were in power when PFI deals were being made. However unlike the man in the street they will be comfortable looked after via their private health care insurance arrangements. The rest of us will just have to take it or leave it or better still die. Is'nt democracy wonderful.
What does it take to make people like Kershaw listen? Is it his remit to carve up the NHS regardless of local opposition? If so why did he say on the BBC news today that it is still in the consultation stage. Does consultation mean asking stake holders (us) what we think or is 'consultation' another way of sealing a 'done deal'? If it is the latter then it is a shameful abuse of power. The grotesquely overpaid inept NHS administrators are responsible for the financial state of our local hospitals together with Labour and Conservative governments who were in power when PFI deals were being made. However unlike the man in the street they will be comfortable looked after via their private health care insurance arrangements. The rest of us will just have to take it or leave it or better still die. Is'nt democracy wonderful. Peony

2:59am Wed 9 Jan 13

MUSICMASTER says...

PFI costs for Farborough and Woolwich are unsustainable. Ten times investment. But how does a hospital go bankrupt? This is just under-funding by government. Queen Mary's in Sidcup has been turned into a 'Health Campus'when it's A and E and maternity was closed by lies. The same trick is now being applied to Lewisham Hospital. Losing its teaching of junior doctors. Resulting in a million people having only one A and E. When Sidcup was shut there was chaos at Queen Elizabeth as it tried to cope with thousands of patients who would have gone there.The concept of the 'golden hour' when your life could be saved after serious accident has been scrapped.
Private companies already own and run two un-affordable hospitals.
No provider can run them profitably. Criminally insane to close 30% of London A and E's so many more will die needlessly as a result of us all queuing at just one in another vain attempt to make PFI affordable.Why should people die needlessly so obscene profits can be made? Cameron must confront these PFI contracts and re-negotiate them as a national emergency.
PFI costs for Farborough and Woolwich are unsustainable. Ten times investment. But how does a hospital go bankrupt? This is just under-funding by government. Queen Mary's in Sidcup has been turned into a 'Health Campus'when it's A and E and maternity was closed by lies. The same trick is now being applied to Lewisham Hospital. Losing its teaching of junior doctors. Resulting in a million people having only one A and E. When Sidcup was shut there was chaos at Queen Elizabeth as it tried to cope with thousands of patients who would have gone there.The concept of the 'golden hour' when your life could be saved after serious accident has been scrapped. Private companies already own and run two un-affordable hospitals. No provider can run them profitably. Criminally insane to close 30% of London A and E's so many more will die needlessly as a result of us all queuing at just one in another vain attempt to make PFI affordable.Why should people die needlessly so obscene profits can be made? Cameron must confront these PFI contracts and re-negotiate them as a national emergency. MUSICMASTER

9:48am Wed 9 Jan 13

greenjack says...

Of course it is in their remit to "carve up the NHS". Not many people are aware of the changes in the Health & Social Care Act 2012, expected to be put in place by April this year. The Bill has been analysed by Stephen Cragg of Doughty Street Chambers, on behalf of the 38 Degrees campaign, who concluded that "Effectively, the duty to provide a national health service would be lost if the Bill becomes law, and would be replaced by a duty on an unknown number of commissioning consortia with only a duty to make or arrange provision for that section of the population for which it is responsible." It replaces a “duty to provide” with a “Duty to promote”.
So just whatch them continue to hack away.
Of course it is in their remit to "carve up the NHS". Not many people are aware of the changes in the Health & Social Care Act 2012, expected to be put in place by April this year. The Bill has been analysed by Stephen Cragg of Doughty Street Chambers, on behalf of the 38 Degrees campaign, who concluded that "Effectively, the duty to provide a national health service would be lost if the Bill becomes law, and would be replaced by a duty on an unknown number of commissioning consortia with only a duty to make or arrange provision for that section of the population for which it is responsible." It replaces a “duty to provide” with a “Duty to promote”. So just whatch them continue to hack away. greenjack

1:27pm Wed 9 Jan 13

Slonik says...

I think people should seriously consider not having accidents or emergencies for the foreseeable future! :/

Just think how much better our hospitals would run if there were no pesky patients screwing things up for all those managers...
I think people should seriously consider not having accidents or emergencies for the foreseeable future! :/ Just think how much better our hospitals would run if there were no pesky patients screwing things up for all those managers... Slonik

4:19pm Wed 9 Jan 13

Peony says...

The real reality here is the fact that no government or local government are prepared to be accountable for any services anymore. NHS will be hived off to private healthcare companies the same way social care has been outsourced to care companies.

In their defence they will argue that the Care Quality Commission will be the watchdog that polices the system. The CQC actually is not fit for purpose if you remember the Mid Staffs NHS atrocities happened on their watch and the Winterbourne View cruelty to vulnerable learning disabled adults. They refuse to listen to whistleblowers and they have not got the will or the power to be really effective. Just another group of highly paid CEO's heading up a quango which is over reliant on ticking boxes instead of personal investigation. The government and local governments will do what it does best in these situations. Absolutely nothing!
The real reality here is the fact that no government or local government are prepared to be accountable for any services anymore. NHS will be hived off to private healthcare companies the same way social care has been outsourced to care companies. In their defence they will argue that the Care Quality Commission will be the watchdog that polices the system. The CQC actually is not fit for purpose if you remember the Mid Staffs NHS atrocities happened on their watch and the Winterbourne View cruelty to vulnerable learning disabled adults. They refuse to listen to whistleblowers and they have not got the will or the power to be really effective. Just another group of highly paid CEO's heading up a quango which is over reliant on ticking boxes instead of personal investigation. The government and local governments will do what it does best in these situations. Absolutely nothing! Peony

5:54pm Wed 9 Jan 13

Slonik says...

Shock horror - regulatory body exposed as not fit for purpose. Now where have a I heard that before?...
Shock horror - regulatory body exposed as not fit for purpose. Now where have a I heard that before?... Slonik

10:40pm Wed 9 Jan 13

Reynz1 says...

Ridiculous !!! They've just spent millions of pounds building a new A&E at lewisham hospital!!! Which only goes to prove that employing the lowest level of management is the problem with the nhs trust and is where the shake up should start!!! Sack the big wallets at the top not the doctors nurses and admin staff that keep it running !!!! Makes me feel sick !!
Ridiculous !!! They've just spent millions of pounds building a new A&E at lewisham hospital!!! Which only goes to prove that employing the lowest level of management is the problem with the nhs trust and is where the shake up should start!!! Sack the big wallets at the top not the doctors nurses and admin staff that keep it running !!!! Makes me feel sick !! Reynz1

10:50pm Wed 9 Jan 13

Polly Staight says...

The problem with the NHS is that it is exactly like Soviet tractor production.

Command led...

...by criminals.
The problem with the NHS is that it is exactly like Soviet tractor production. Command led... ...by criminals. Polly Staight

11:35am Thu 10 Jan 13

greenjack says...

I'm told the more pressure on the secretary of state & the more noise we make the better.
If you can make it there is a demo tonight outside Golsmith's college where they are filming Question Time tonight. Questions are going to be asked about the report & proposals.
There is also another demo on Sat 26th Jan in Lewisham. More details, petitions etc on the website www.savelewishamhosp
ital.com
I'm told the more pressure on the secretary of state & the more noise we make the better. If you can make it there is a demo tonight outside Golsmith's college where they are filming Question Time tonight. Questions are going to be asked about the report & proposals. There is also another demo on Sat 26th Jan in Lewisham. More details, petitions etc on the website www.savelewishamhosp ital.com greenjack

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