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Daily Mail: EXCLUSIVE: NHS more than DOUBLES spending on private beds for mental health patients after slashing hundreds of its own beds – to save money

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“In some areas, bed cuts were drastic. One trust alone, Norfolk and Suffolk, axed 74 mental health beds from its stock of 322 in just two years – a cut of almost a quarter.”

Local MP Norman Lamb must be so proud of Norfolk & Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT) and his legacy as the Minister of State at the Department of Health responsible for mental health. Here’s a graph of spending on out of area beds at NSFT, which is currently under investigation by the financial regulator Monitor:

The Catastrophic Failure of the Radical Redesign in a GraphThe Kafkaesque clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) and NSFT broke the pledge they made in January 2014 to end out of area placements by the end of April 2014. It was the Chief Officer of Norman Lamb’s local CCG, Mark Taylor, who more than twelve months ago told the Norfolk County Council Health Overview & Scrutiny Committee that out of area placements would end. They haven’t.

Nobody takes responsibility for the failure to resolve the beds crisis and there is no sense of urgency. Norman Lamb’s government created the bureaucratic, unaccountable and undemocratic CCGs and NHS England in the Health & Social Care Act. The average cost of sending a person in crisis out of area is £552 per night plus VAT and untold human misery.

Jeremy Hunt denounced the practice of transporting people in crisis across the country in April 2014. Norman Lamb gave his standard ‘totally unacceptable’ response back in May 2014 but the mental health crisis got worse, with the detention of people in crisis in police cells, breaching their human rights, becoming so common that the police developed a standard letter of complaint to send to NSFT and the CCGs.

As the King’s Fund has shown, mental health funding has been cut by Norman Lamb’s government. If ‘parity of esteem’ meant being funded fairly on a par with physical health, mental health services in Norfolk and Suffolk would have £570,000 more to spend each and every week. No wonder services are collapsing when there is a £30 million funding shortfall.

Duplicitous Norman Lamb is a wolf in sheep’s clothing: he has overseen the slashing of mental health funding whilst claiming to be a mental health champion.

Read the full article on the Daily Mail website by clicking on the image below. Of course, since this article tells the truth about the consequences of his savage cuts, Norman ‘mental health champion’ Lamb is nowhere to be found:

Daily Mail EXCLUSIVE NHS more than DOUBLES spending on private beds for mental health patients after slashing hundreds of its own beds - to save money

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One thought on “Daily Mail: EXCLUSIVE: NHS more than DOUBLES spending on private beds for mental health patients after slashing hundreds of its own beds – to save money

  1. Terry skyrme says:

    Just shows what a disaster the Radical Redesign has been, and how slow NSFT has been to recognize the crisis, constantly blaming “bed blocking” for the problem rather than financial cutbacks. The latest myth being perpetuated is that this is just a Central Norfolk problem, as if any locality in Norfolk and Suffolk can be independent when it comes to inpatient provision. The hidden factor in all this is the over-occupancy of NSFT wards and the consequent lowering of the quality of care. There is also the problem of being unable to use home leave in a constructive way; there is little flexibility left in the inpatient system.

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