THE date for when a decision about the future of community hospitals in the Moorlands has been delayed due to the forthcoming general election. The governing bodies of the Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) of Stoke-on-Trent and North Staffordshire were set to meet in December to decide on the future of both Cheadle and Leek & Moorlands Hospitals. However, a spokesman for North Staffs CCG said: “The General Election will take place on Thursday, December 12, with Parliament now dissolved.
“This signifies the start of the pre-election period known as ‘purdah’, which places specific restrictions on the use of public resources and the communication and engagement activities of public bodies, including all NHS organisations.
“During the pre-election period, there should be: no new decisions or announcements of policy or strategy; no decisions on large and/or contentious procurement contracts; no participation by NHS representatives in debates and events that may be politically controversial.”
The spokesman further explained what this means to the CCGs in Stoke-on-Trent and North Staffs: “Locally, the pre-election period impacts on a number of activities that were due to take place over the next few months, which unfortunately will now have to be postponed until the Government is reformed.
“These include activities that were planned by the six clinical commissioning groups in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent as well as Together We’re Better, the local Sustainability Transformation Partnership (STP).
“Activities that will now need to be postponed until the restrictions are lifted include: The Extra Ordinary Governing Body meeting to consider the Decision-Making Business Case (DMBC) on the future of Local Health Services in North Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent; as well as: Engagement on the prescribing of gluten free foods in south Staffordshire; Engagement on ‘Difficult Decisions’ in relation to aligning commissioning policies: assisted conception; hearing loss in adults; removal of excess skin following significant weight loss; breast augmentation and reconstruction; and male and female sterilisation; East Staffordshire CCG’s Governing Body’s consideration of proposals to transfer the hyper-acute stroke service from Burton Hospital to Derby Hospital; and Together We’re Better options appraisal workshops held with the public to develop proposals for future service change across health and care.
“Once the restrictions have been lifted when a new Government is formed, health and care system partners will consider when to recommence activity as it may coincide with the holiday and new year period.”
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