Posted: February 28 2017
Hertfordshire Community NHS Trust (HCT), which provides adult and children’s community services across the county, is hosting a series of events during March for local residents to learn more about the planned changes to health services in west Hertfordshire.
The NHS is facing significant financial challenges as it tackles unprecedented increases in demand for its services and this is impacting on all NHS organisations. HCT has a new contract with Herts Valley CCG, which has resulted in a decrease in its budget. A significant element of the budget reduction is related to funding for HCT community beds which the CCG can no longer provide. In addition, HCT is required to find annual efficiency savings.
To address the challenges, HCT plans to introduce innovative new health services, caring for more people in their own homes and reducing the number of its community hospital beds in west Hertfordshire. Plans include:
• Closing Sopwell and Langton wards at St Albans City Hospital
• Opening ten beds at Langley House in Watford
• Introducing a new ‘discharge to assess’ service at West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust (WHHT)
• Taking on responsibility for a ward in Hemel Hempstead that will support patients to get home as soon as they are ready
• Recruiting more healthcare assistants to bolster its community nursing and therapy teams.
HCT Chief Executive David Law said: “We have a responsibility to explain to local people what is happening and why. I and my colleagues will also seek to reassure residents that the action we are taking will help us to manage more people back to their own homes on a timely basis and to use our remaining community beds effectively for those who need them.”
Public information meetings will be held in Hemel Hempstead, St Albans and Watford on the following dates in March:
• Wednesday 8 March, 2pm to 3.30pm or 6pm to 7.30pm at South Hill Centre, Cemetery Hill, Hemel Hempstead, HP1 1JF
• Tuesday 14 March, 2pm to 3.30pm or 6pm to 7.30pm at Jubilee Centre, Catherine Street, St Albans, AL3 5BU
• Thursday 23 March, 2pm to 3.30pm or 6pm to 7.30pm at Holywell Community Centre, Chaffinch Lane, Watford, WD18 9QD
If you are a journalist or media representative requiring further information contact our communications team on (01707) 388148 or via firstname.lastname@example.org
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