Save Poole A&E and Maternity: Email to Swanage Town Council today, regarding Dorset Health Scrutiny’s submission to the Secretary of State, and Swanage Town Council asking that the issue of known risk to residents is fully addressed in the submission
“Thank you for your email.
It’s good to know that some Defend Dorset NHS documents have been appended to the official submission from Dorset Health Scrutiny to the Secretary of State.
However, as we do not know what is in that submission, we cannot comment on whether we feel that Swanage Town Council supporting that submission with a letter will address residents concerns. It was agreed at the Town Council Meeting on 29th October that Swanage Town Council would form a working group to make their own submission to the Secretary of State, and Defend Dorset NHS had asked to be included in that process.
These concerns included:
– that Dorset Clinical Commissioning Group (DCCG) has failed to attend to the risk to residents, having by their own admission not completed, for 15 months, the ‘further review by a range of Specialist Clinicians’ called for on page 2, 1.6, of the Ambulance Trust Report of August 2017, to establish the extent of the Clinical Risk: https://www.dorsetsvision.nhs.uk/…/uploads/2017/09/swast-re…
– that Clinicians emails released during the High Court case made it clear that this work can be completed providing the Clinicians are given time, and access to patients Hospital records, but that Clinicians have not been given these over a 15 month period. If this is disputed, please advise, we will raise with our Solicitors to ask for those emails to be released.
– the condition of the Maternity, Adult and Child patients in the tables of specific cases treated at Poole last year that are listed in the Ambulance Trust Report on pages 10, 15-16 and 24 respectively.
– that South West Ambulance Services Trust (SWAST) noted ‘Yes’ against ‘Potential Harm’ in many of the adult cases listed on pages 15-16, but that the analysis of ‘Potential Harm’ was missing for all of the Maternity and Paediatric cases
– that the CCG calculated for the High Court, based on the Ambulance Trust Report, that 132 over 4 months, or 396 a year, were at risk of ‘Potential Harm’. Again, if this is disputed, then we can provide the CCG’s own calculation.
– that a Dorset A&E Dr has looked through the cases in the Ambulance Trust Report, has said that just under half of those listed were in imminent danger of dying, so that any longer journey was likely to prove fatal. The A&E Dr has further advised us which specific patients were likely to have died had Poole A&E and Maternity not been there, and this information has been given to Dorset Health Scrutiny Committee (DHSC) 3 times: in the last two pages of the Risk Report given to the Task and Finish Group on 22nd August, and in emails to Committee Councillors and Officers on 17th October and 28th October. This information is also pasted below this email, as it was part of the statement made to Swanage Town Council Meeting on Monday 29th October and submitted to Council Officers electronically just after the Meeting. It is in any case a matter of common sense in relation to many of these cases that a patient with no pulse, or post cardiac arrest, or an unresponsive child post multiple convulsion, or a Mum with ectopic pregnancy bleeding into abdominal cavity resulting in extremely low blood pressure, are close to death. Swanage Town Councillor and Dorset Health Scrutiny Councillor Tim Morris is an ex GP and we’re sure that he could advise Swanage Town Council on the survival chances of the patients in the tables given the further time it would have taken to access services other than at Poole.
– that as a consequence of this information from the Dorset A&E Dr it is clear that likely fatalities resulting from the downgrading of A&E and closure of Maternity at Poole are at least 183 per year, and this is only of those emergencies who arrive at A&E/Maternity by ambulance
– the Freedom of Information Act Requests (FOI’s) showing that 77% of the 590 maternity emergencies treated at Poole last year did not arrive by ambulance (4826, attached), and that 251 newborns needed intensive or high dependency neo-natal care at Poole (5126, attached) have been provided to DHSC Councillors and Officers twice.
– the DCCG’s own presentation to Purbeck Councillors on 29th November gave ambulance times of 47 minutes to DCH and 57 to RBH from Swanage, and that these are always outside the safe guidelines of 30-45 minutes in acute stroke, major trauma and maternity emergency quoted by the CCG’s own Consultants Steer Davies Gleave in their March 2015 Travel Times Analysis – see SWAST Purbeck Travel Times attached
– that Tim Goodson DCCG CE stated at DHSC on 17th October that the average journey time from BH19 postcodes to Poole Hospital with cat 1 imminent danger of death patients over a 13 month period was just over 37 minutes and that therefore his claim that all Dorset patients could get to DCH or RBH in 40 minutes by blue light is evidentially untrue, as DCH is 8 miles further away, and the CCG’s own presentation to Purbeck Councillors puts DCH as an 8 minute longer journey and RBH as a 19 minute longer journey
– that the CCG’s claims that a blue light ambulance is 30% faster than ‘normal’ travel times is evidentially untrue as AA Routefinder says it is 38 minutes from Swanage to Poole Hospital and Tim Goodson stated to DHSC (and this has been video’d) that the blue light cat 1 cases took on average just over 37 minutes to get from all BH19 postcodes to Poole, despite some BH19 postcodes – Langton, Worth and Studland – being 5 minutes nearer to Poole than Swanage is according to DCCG
– the reality of the Langton Parish FOI to SWAST showing that 1 hour 43 minutes is the average time from category 1 call to arrival at Poole Hospital for ALL BH19 postcodes over the 13 month period Nov 16 – Dec 17. This was confirmed by Langton Parish in their letter to DHSC which appeared at page 19 of the Agenda Supplement Pack for the DHSC Meeting on 17th October:
The FOI itself can be obtained from Langton Parish, if needed, or I am happy to put a copy through the Town Council’s door.
It would be very helpful to know:
1) Which of our documents have been appended to the official submission by DHSC? Not least because we are working on our own submission
2) Whether we will be told when the official submission from DHSC has gone, and advised how to access this?
3) Whether we will be told when Swanage Town Council’s supporting letter has been sent, and advised how to access this?
I’m sure you know how hard Defend Dorset NHS has worked for over two years now, including supporting the preparation of the two day High Court case, and we have at times been baffled by the many missed opportunities for joint working with the local Govt bodies responsible for representing residents
We do not understand why what was said at the Town Council on Monday 29th October regarding the risk to residents, which included the table of cases assessed by the Dorset A&E Dr as likely to have died had services at Poole not been there, cannot be appended to the record of the Town Council Meeting. This was handed out in hard copy at the Meeting, and provided electronically shortly after the Meeting. It can be seen via the link below.
Swanage Town Council’s failure to record this statement and evidence about the risk to residents is particularly concerning given that this is the same evidence regarding the Ambulance Trust Report cases that both the CCG and Dorset Health Scrutiny have previously ignored, and not reported. This is bound to create anxiety and mistrust for Swanage residents, 4,226 of whom signed by hand a petition to Save Poole A&E and Maternity.”