Off to the Haringey Primary Care Trust to meet its chair, Richard Sumray and Helen Brown. We (Richard Wilson, Lib Dem Health Spokesperson on Haringey Council and I) want a progress report on Hornsey Hospital, and what’s happening to clinics in Wood Green, on top-slicing, on the Government’s attitude towards District General Hospitals – and on and on.
On Hornsey Hospital it would seem that the bid is stuck on a technicality. We were assured that this was just technical and that the Health Department was looking to work it through. Our bigger interest is in what is going to be provided on site – and our 5 point prescription had a mixed reception. No – there was no need for more GPs – but yes there could be opening hours providing better service out of normal hours for local people. Good! Because thus far the GP contracts had delivered lots of dosh for doctors but not extra hours for local people.
As to the impact on pharmacists – we couldn’t manage to get them to promise that all would survive but we did manage to get a promise to supply all the local pharmacists with enough information early enough for them to bid or form a cooperative to bid for the new pharmacy.
We all agreed that it was vital to provide more public transport. Phew!
And in terms of consulting with GPs and local people we did manage to extract a ‘we can look at that’ when we put forward the need to ask far more widely what was wanted than just Haringey’s Area Assemblies. We suggested they do this through the GP practises and I think they agreed that it could be done when the consultation on the future of local Primary Care goes out. I suggested that could be a separate and special survey / piece of paper asking specifically about Hornsey Hospital.
So – some progress I guess. I then had to leave Richard there to finish the meeting as I had to go and read a story to some of the children at St Mary’s for National Story Telling Week.
That was complete fun! I read a really ghastly tale of a boy who, to cut a long story short, watched so much television and ate so many crisps he ended up a crisp. And there was no happy ending. It was huge fun for me – certainly. I just hope the kids enjoyed it as much as I did.