Health chiefs in Great Yarmouth and Waveney said the public’s views formed an “incredibly important part” in their decision making on the future of mental health services in the area.

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Members of HealthEast - the Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) - met today to discuss the results of a public consultation in which 80pc of respondents disagreed with Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust proposals to cut the number of adult acute beds from 28 to 20.

More than 1,000 people took part in the consultation, with 78pc disagreeing with a plan to close two wards at Carlton Court, near Lowestoft, for older people or patients with dementia.

John Stammers, chairman of the CCG, said they would use data on bed demand and use and seek the views of medics and GPs to make a decision on how to shape mental health services.

He added that the CCG spent more on mental health than any other groups in Norfolk and Suffolk and needed to ensure they were getting best value for money.

Andy Evans, chief executive of HealthEast, added: “Public opinion is really important to us, but it is not the whole picture. It is an incredibly important part of an incredibly complex set of issues. Our decision making in the summer will look at how to best use resources or shift resources to the best model of care we can possibly design.”

The meeting also heard that 28pc of acute beds at Northgate Hospital in Yarmouth and Carlton Court were occupied by patients from outside the area.

HealthEast’s governing body will discuss its response to the consultation on July 24.

1 comment

  • Other CCGs should now hold similar consultative arrangements for all the geographical areas of the mental health trust.I regret the passing of the old Community Health Councils which seemed to be a better way of the public having a real voice.In the end it is the politicians who must be held to account.

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    Peter Watson

    Thursday, June 5, 2014

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