Defend Dorset NHS
The Rt Hon Matt Hancock MP
Secretary of State for Health and Social Care
39 Victoria Street
London SW1H 0EU
Your Ref: TO – 1156976 17th March 2019

Dear Secretary of State

Re: Dorset County Council’s referral of Dorset CCG’s Hospital reconfiguration plans, due to risk to life, for Independent Review.

This referral was made on 5th November 2018, and supported by Poole Borough Council on 4th January 2019. Could you clarify why these plans have still not been passed to the Independent Reconfiguration Panel?

I write again because there is no clinical evidence supporting the downgrading of Poole A&E, and closure of Poole Maternity and Paediatric Departments, and no proper risk assessment of the reconfiguration has been carried out.

Since my last letter of 11th January 2019, a Claimant who is supported by us, and who sought Judicial Review of the plans, has been granted a Hearing at the Court of Appeal.

Please see enclosed email correspondence initiated by Debbie Fleming, the Chief Executive of Poole and Bournemouth Hospital Trusts. Please note I was unable to forward the correspondence by email, as there is no longer a working email address for the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care.

The enclosed correspondence demonstrates that:

Ms Fleming is unable to provide any clinical research evidence

1) that reconfiguring services in a semi rural area like Dorset will improve any outcomes

2) that counters the clinical evidence showing that in time critical conditions a longer wait for treatment predicts worse outcomes

3) that any attempt has been made to assess the risk to patients in high risk groups and/or facing the longest journeys to hospital under the plans

Best wishes

Debbie Monkhouse
Defend Dorset NHS

The following calls in to question the role being played by the Poole and Bournemouth & Christchurch NHS trusts:


Email to Debbie Fleming :

From: debmonkh <[email protected]>
To: Debbie.Fleming <[email protected]>
Sent: Mon, 4 Mar 2019 18:11
Subject: Re: Catch Up

Dear Debbie

Thank you for your email. My apologies too, for the delay in replying.
Unfortunately your email makes clear that you are unable to address any of
the concerns raised at points 1-3 in my email below.
We are asking for Dorset relevant peer reviewed clinical research evidence,
not verbal assurances.

Bluntly the absence of any Dorset relevant peer reviewed clinical research
evidence in support of these plans is, in itself, appalling.
It makes clear that the reconfiguration is not clinically driven, but is based on
financial and staffing challenges. The solution is to address those issues, not
expect residents to agree to be ‘collateral damage’ for ideologically driven cuts
that the Govt has no mandate for.

Regarding point 3) below, the absence of any proper risk assessment of the
plans, your comments suggest you have not read the attached letter to the
Secretary of State, as your reply provides no response to the points made,
which address the “Expert Review” among many other issues, including those
at point 3 below.

I do understand that you would like to persuade us to stop campaigning,
however that can only be achieved by retention of emergency, maternity and
paediatric services at Poole. People from Christchurch and Purbeck can get
to Poole in safe times. However people from Purbeck and North Dorset, and
maternity emergencies from the West of the County, cannot get to RBH in
safe times.

If there is a possibility of retaining A&E, Maternity and Paediatric services at
Poole we would be delighted to have a discussion about that.

Yours sincerely
Defend Dorset NHS

To report this post you need to login first.
Previous articleThe Flying Scotsman visits Dorset
Next articleIs Centrism a con? Yes, of course it is
Dorset Eye
Dorset Eye is an independent not for profit news website built to empower all people to have a voice. To be sustainable Dorset Eye needs your support. Please help us to deliver independent citizen news... by clicking the link below and contributing. Your support means everything for the future of Dorset Eye. Thank you.