Agenda item

HealthCare for the Future Update

To consider a report by the NHS North Cumbria Clinical Commissioning Group (copy to follow).



The Committee considered a report which provided information regarding progress made on outstanding developments following the Healthcare For the Future Consultation.


Members were informed that the building work for the purpose built Hyper Acute Stroke Unit (HASU) at the Cumberland Infirmary Carlisle (CIC) had been completed and was now operating for patients who would have received their treatment in Carlisle.  It was explained the Unit would eventually be fully operational and include patients from West Cumbria.


The Committee noted that the full opening would mean that all potential stroke patients would initially be brought to the Unit at CIC for a maximum of 72 hours where they would have access to a specialist stroke team 24 hours a day, seven days a week.  It was explained the patient would then be either discharged home with support from the Early Supported Stroke Discharge (ESSD) and the Integrated Care Community (ICC) teams or remain in hospital for ongoing care and rehabilitation.


Members were informed there had been considerable work over the last two years to develop the HASU including the design of the Unit, recruitment of additional specialist staff and the development of the new ESSD team in Copeland and Workington to support patients at home, or closer to home.  It was explained that after previous recruitment difficulties introduction of the new model had improved this situation.


The Committee was informed the Trust was expecting imminent confirmation from the North West Ambulance Service (NWAS) as to when they would be in a position to provide the appropriate transport.  Members asked that they be given early notice if there were any indications that there would be delays in NWAS being ready to enable access to the HSCU.


During the course of discussion a concern was raised regarding the term ‘Zone of Disadvantage’ being used with reference to the Copeland area and potentially giving the impression that the population would not benefit from the HASU.  Officers acknowledged the concerns this could raise and agreed to raise this matter with the West Cumberland Hospital Group but emphasised the HASU would improve services for the whole of the county.


Members drew attention to the constant fragile services in West Cumbria and were assured that collaborative work was being undertaken to investigate any matters of concern. 


The Committee welcomed the new improved service and it was agreed the Co?Production Review would focus on the HASU to ensure all evidence was captured and shared when convenient. 


A discussion took place regarding future reporting of HealthCare for the Future to the Committee and it was agreed that Lead Health members, the Strategic Policy and Scrutiny Adviser and Head of Communications and Engagement, NHS North Cumbria Clinical Commissioning Group would consider how best to continue to monitor developments around the topics usually covered under this agenda item.


RESOLVED,     that


                            (1)       the report be noted;


                            (2)       early notice be given to the Cumbria Health Scrutiny Committee if there are any indications that there will be delays in NWAS being ready to enable access to the Hyper Acute Stroke Unit.


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