By Harriet Ernstsons 17/08 Updated: 17/08 09:46
DOCTORS are remaining tight-lipped about their view on plans to downgrade services at the Alexandra Hospital.
All GPs within ten miles of the Woodrow Drive hospital were sent letters by the Save the Alex campaign group asking for their thoughts on the proposals by Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, but only one replied.
This week campaigners protested outside Hillview Medical Centre, teh base of Dr Jonathan Wells, chair of Redditch and Bromsgrove Clinical Commissioning Group which will be responsible for buying in health services for the area from April next year - to urge them to speak out.
Neal Stote, head of the campaign group, said it was only right the public should know if doctors backed the close on 50,000 people who had signed the petition.
“I understand we are not in formal consultation yet, but by the time we are it will be too late for our GPs to voice objections they hopefully have to the Alex potentially losing its A&E and maternity services,” he said.
“Our GPs must have some sort of view on this Joint Services Review, one letter in response to our letter is worrying.
“I ask everybody seeing their doctors in the coming weeks to ask them what they think about the proposed cuts at the Alex and what will be the effect of the further £150 million that has to be also saved.”
In the letter, doctors were asked to confirm if they felt options mooted in the first phase of the review were safe and sustainable.
Dr Wells said doctors encouraged residents to engage with the Joint Services Review.
“We fully appreciate the concerns of our local population and our priority is to ensure we provide high quality healthcare services which are sustainable for local people,” he added.
“We are currently in listening mode and helping the public to understand the need for change, which exists nationally as well as locally. No decisions have been made and it would be confusing for individual practices to comment at this stage for that reason.
“As a membership organisation, the Redditch and Bromsgrove CCG will meet with the 22 member practices to come to an agreed position on the Joint Services Review and will share this with the public.”
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