CASH-strapped doctors in Worcester are asking residents to have their say on proposals to restrict access to assisted conception treatment and reduce the availability of certain items on prescription.
Local doctors in the NHS South Worcestershire clinical commissioning group – who are responsible for buying healthcare services for residents – are seeking the views of patients before making any formal decisions later this year.
As part of the public engagement exercise they are asking what people think about proposals to reduce or stop access to certain medicines, treatments, products and food items on prescription, specifically:
- Treatments and medicines for short-term, minor conditions / ailments
- Gluten-free foods
- Baby milks and specialist infant formula
- Oral nutrition supplements.
The CCG also want to know what people think about proposals to reduce access to assisted conception (including IVF).
The proposals have been formulated by the county’s three CCGs, which also include those in NHS South Worcestershire and NHS Wyre Forest.
Mari Gay, interim chief operating officer said: “We face a significant financial challenge and are continuing to look at ways we can transform services to reduce possible waste and inefficiency.
“However we must also consider whether to constrict access to some services in the future to protect others.
“While there’s clearly a need to make some changes to what we do, any decisions must also be based on a really good understanding of patient and service user priorities.”
The public engagement exercise will last for five weeks, ending on Wednesday, April 12, 2017, with the results being discussed at the CCGs’ governing body meetings in May and June later in the year.
To find out how to have your say visit the ‘Get Involved’ section of any of the three Worcestershire CCG websites.