Text Only Version Last Update: Press Releases (22 May 2023)
layout graphic
David Ruffley MP
layout graphic
layout graphic
David Ruffley
layout element
layout element Home layout element
layout element
layout element About David layout element
layout element
layout element Local News layout element
layout element
layout element Hot Local Issues layout element
layout element
layout element National Policies layout element
layout element
layout element Contact Me layout element
layout element
layout element Your Questions Answered layout element
layout element
layout element What The Papers Say layout element
layout element
layout element The Ruffley Report layout element
layout element
layout element Links layout element
layout element
layout element Constituency Maps layout element
layout element
layout element tellDavidRuffley.com layout element
layout element
layout element Search layout element
layout element layout element
layout element
layout element
D-Day for health service cuts
Benedict O'Connor, East Anglian Daily Times, 29 June 2023
A FURTHER 229 health workers will learn whether the axe is due to fall on their jobs today, in addition to the 220 already bracing themselves for redundancy.
layout element
layout element
The spiralling £42.5million debt crisis facing health services in west Suffolk is top of the agenda at two crunch meetings today, where the loss of up to 449 jobs, 103 hospital beds and two surgical theatres will be discussed.
layout element
layout element
The East Anglian Daily Times has already revealed the Suffolk West Primary Care Trust's plans to shut the Walnuttree Hospital, Sudbury, and close beds at Newmarket Hospital.
layout element
layout element
But agenda papers for today's trust board meeting in Bury St Edmunds revealed the extent of the toll on employment caused by the crisis.
layout element
layout element
According to the trust papers, the loss of all 32 hospital beds in Sudbury and 16 hospital beds in Newmarket will mean a potential 229 job losses in both towns.
layout element
layout element
A trust spokeswoman said these were intended to be split among full and part-time positions and it hoped to redeploy as many staff as possible, while some job losses would be down to “natural wastage.”
layout element
layout element
She added: “These are very difficult times for our staff and our patients and the board will carefully consider them. These are only recommendations and the board has the final decision.”
layout element
layout element
The majority of the £42.5m debt - which accounts for last year's overspend and this year's forecast overspend - is split almost equally between the West Suffolk Hospitals Trust and the Suffolk West Primary Care Trust, with an estimated £1.4m of savings to be made from the Suffolk Mental Health Partnership Trust.
layout element
layout element
At the West Suffolk Hospitals Trust board meeting, also held in Bury St Edmunds today, members are due to debate the proposed axe of 220 jobs, 55 hospital beds and two surgical theatres at West Suffolk Hospital, Bury St Edmunds.
layout element
layout element
But agenda papers showed that the overnight accident and emergency services at West Suffolk Hospital, which had been cited by chief executive Chris Bown as a likely victim of the cuts, look to have won a reprieve as removing them was judged unlikely to save money.
layout element
layout element
All three west Suffolk MPs - Tim Yeo, David Ruffley and Richard Spring - have expressed their disgust at the situation and Mr Yeo called for the resignation of Mr Bown, who told the EADT he had no intention of standing down.
layout element
layout element
On the eve of the crisis meetings, a consultant has come forward in Mr Bown's defence, claiming to represent the views of other senior medical staff.
layout element
layout element
Dr John Urquhart, consultant anaesthetist and chairman of West Suffolk Hospital's medical staff committee, said: “We feel that when Chris Bown took over the post of chief executive just 10 months ago, these financial problems already existed and that he should be given a fair chance to sort them out.
layout element
layout element
“In common with all other groups in the trust, senior medical staff at the West Suffolk Hospital are already involved in changing our working patterns to support the trust's plans.
layout element
layout element
“However we would not support any measure that would cause irreversible damage to the trust or an irretrievable diminution of service to the community.
layout element
layout element
“Our support would have been withdrawn immediately if closure of accident and emergency at night, for example, had remained in the financial recovery plan.”
layout element
layout element
layout element
layout graphic
David Ruffley MP - On Your Side
This web site is the responsibility of David Ruffley MP and is paid for from the Incidental Expenses Provision