A CASH saving reconfiguration of health services in Worcestershire has been approved by NHS chiefs at the West Midlands Clinical Senate.
The new clinical model is is expected to save £4.8million and be the catalyst for a further £20million of savings for cash-strapped Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust.
Under the model 95 per cent of patients will see no change to the way they currently access services in the county and all three of the county’s acute hospitals – the Alexandra, Kidderminster Hospital and Treatment Centre and the Worcestershire Royal – will remain open.
The county will also retain its two Accident and Emergency Departments and the Minor Injuries Unit at Kidderminster.
The main changes to services in the clinical model of care are:
• Separation of emergency and planned care to improve outcomes and patient experience
• Creation of centres of excellence for planned surgery
• Urgent care centre for adults and children at the Alexandra Hospital
• A&E remaining at the Alexandra Hospital (adult only) with arrangements for managing a seriously sick child if they arrive unexpectedly or their condition deteriorates and they need to stay in hospital
• Centralisation of inpatient care for children at Worcester with the majority of children’s care remaining local
• Centralisation of consultant-led births at Worcester with ante-natal and post-natal care remaining local
• Centralisation of emergency surgery at Worcester
To cope with the influx of patients Worcestershire Royal had its new modular extension to Accident and Emergency lifted into position on May 28 with the facility due to open in late July/early August.
Figures released by the Trust show that once again it did not achieve the 95 per cent Emergency Access Standard in April 2016 with just 84 per cent of patients being seen within the Government’s four-hour target.
The Trust also failed to deliver the national 15 minute standard for assessment in Emergency Department (ED), coming in at 34 minutes compared to 46 minutes in March 2016,
The trust ended the 2015/16 financial year with a deficit of £59 million, down from a projected £65million earlier in the year.
The proposed changes will now have to go to NHS England for assurance before being put out to public consultation, probably in September.