We have already written about the massive cuts envisaged by the 5 Year Plan submitted by Norfolk & Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT) to its regulator, Monitor. At the NSFT Board meeting last week, one of the non-executive directors of NSFT acknowledged that the real-terms depth of the planned cuts is 7.5 per cent per year for each of the five years of the plan when increasing demand and inflation are taken into account. Norman Lamb, the Health Minister responsible for mental health and local MP for North Norfolk who claims to be so committed to improving mental health services, must be asked how cuts of this magnitude are compatible with ‘parity of esteem‘ or the Francis Report? We need actions not words, cash not concordats.
As soon as NSFT realised that we had found and published the disgraceful and politically embarrassing plan which NSFT intended to quietly submit to Monitor, the information was deleted from the internet. Was it the intention of NSFT and Norman Lamb to keep the dramatic level of cuts hidden until after the general election? Mental health services are already collapsing but the NSFT Board is obsessed with little except hitting its financial targets. Does nobody remember what happened at Mid Staffs?
You can still read the original plan, before the interesting bits were removed, outling the reorganisational chaos, service and job cuts here. We’ll be producing an analysis soon.
Listen to Emma Corlett of Unison interviewed by Mark Matthews on the BBC Radio Norfolk Breakfast Show: