By Ian Dipple Friday 01 November 2013 Updated: 01/11 11:20
DOCTORS have been warned they could be left paying the price for cuts to social care budgets.
Redditch Borough Councillor Pat Witherspoon told a meeting of Redditch and Bromsgrove Clinical Commissioning Group plans to take £9million out of the county council’s adult social care budget next year would have a ‘devastating effect’ and she was concerned the NHS and borough council would be left to pick up the pieces.
Judy Adams, the CCG’s patient representative, added they were being told the impact was already being felt particularly around early intervention services.
“It’s starting to hit already and the older people’s forums have been particularly exercised by this and we have to satisfy ourselves our partners are listening to the impact it may have on health budgets.”
Simon Hairsnape, chief officer of the CCG, said they were working closely with the county council on joining up health and social care services and would have £38million to spend on the project across Worcestershire by 2015, although he acknowledged it was not new money and had been transferred from other areas.
Mary Walters, the CCG’s chief finance officer, added: “We need to ensure we don’t see a cost shift from one organisation to another because that’s not what this is about.
“This is a new way of working not ‘we have got to make a cut somebody else can pay for it’ that’s what we’ve got to avoid. We need to look at it as an opportunity to do things differently.”
But Dr David Law, quality and patient safety lead on the CCG, said he was concerned by what he had heard and they should write and seek reassurance.
“We should not stay silent,” he said.
“We see a problem coming and we need to see that resolved.”
Peter Pinfield, the chairman of patients’ group Healthwatch, has also urged the public to have their say on the cuts by asking to speak at a crucial meeting of the council’s cabinet at County Hall in Worcester on Thursday (November 7).
Coun Marcus Hart, responsible for health and well-being on the council, said service specific consultation would take place before any changes were implemented and they would listen to all feedback.
“Any decisions taken will be made with the care of the county’s most vulnerable residents at the very forefront of our minds.”
To make a comment at the meeting email firstname.lastname@example.org or write to
Legal & Democratic Services Unit, Worcestershire County Council, County Hall, Spetchley Road, Worcester, WR5 2NP by 9am on Wednesday (November 6).
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