The permanent closure of 12 older people’s beds.
HealthEast is interested in your feedback on the elements of these proposals.
Permanently closing 12 beds at Laurel Ward, Carlton Court.
“These are wonderful beds in a first class facility please keep them open. This proposal effectively means that the number of beds for people who require acute care in adult mental health services is reducing from 40 to 20. More beds are needed, not fewer.”
“This is totally wrong. The number of beds available should not be decreased. With an ageing population there will always be a need for specialist older person beds. These beds are not under-used or inappropriately used. How will swapping them for 4 beds in another location maintain the service.”
“These beds are closed already – the staff made redundant or redeployed. The beds are clearly needed. We need beds locally. The beds should be reopened with immediate effect.”
“This, in addition to a real term cut of 50% of functional beds (adult and >65), is completely unworkable, and far beyond the 20% cuts in costs required.”
“This proposal puts additional pressure on adult acute beds. A reduction in bed numbers could leave the most vulnerable in danger of being insufficiently monitored and treated.”
“Patients are being sent to hospitals out of area therefore current provision isn’t adequate. Acute services already stretched to breaking point. The Trust is spending thousands of pounds on private beds. Keep the ward open to reduce the impact on adult services. Not all elderly patients are suitable for admission to adult wards. People can’t always be cared for at home”
“Residential provision is sometimes the only humane course, and there needs to be adequate provision of this. These beds should be reopened immediately for the over 65s.”
“People over 65 need specialists to manage their drugs as new ones for other conditions are introduced. A significant amount of over 65 years patients have physical health issues and some frailty. Currently in our locality the over 65’s are being catered for on the adult acute words. This is proving a significant challenge to the nursing staff due to the large age range and physical abilities of each person.”
“This causes transport issues for family and carers. Julian Hospital is too far to travel from Lowestoft.”
“This is a terrible suggestion. Carlton Court is a well-designed building with light and space and landscaped areas. To shut down a purpose-built centre in less than 10 yrs. seems lunacy. We cannot see how this will improve the mental health services.”
“Some people have no where to go or no one to care for them when they are acutely unwell. This change might decrease financial costs, but it might cost lives.”
“‘Length of stay’ has increased due to care coordinators not working as part of an integrated team.”
“Continuity will be lost, papers will be boxed up and forgotten. Convert rather than close – for use by adult services.”
The disgraceful truth is that Norfolk & Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT) has already closed these beds and made staff redundant.
Given her role in pushing through the catastrophic radical redesign and slashing services to vulnerable older people in the face of public and professional concerns which have been completely vindicated, how can the former chair of NSFT, Maggie Wheeler, remain the Janus-faced Chair of the Norfolk & Suffolk Dementia Alliance?