Safe & Sustainable - Use your power!

Ok,

I'm fully expecting to be pilloried for this blog, and the easiest thing to do would be to duck the issue...

However, that's not who I am.

The Safe & Sustainable review of children's heart surgery has produced its options, and all of the documentation that underpins them. They're published on the NHS website here:
http://www.specialisedservices.nhs.uk/document/meeting-joint-committee-primary-care-trusts-jcpct-16th-february-2011-agenda

What will be happening over the next couple of months is that you will have the opportunity to comment on these options, challenge their validity and put forward your points of view.

I'd suggest that you read the documents, in case your concerns have already been addressed, and so your arguments are based on evidence. Just putting up that you disagree won't cut much mustard, to get the best option for all heart kids needing surgery you need to give the reasons why a configuration works or doesn't work.

Now for the bit some of you won't like...

Some of this is maths -

there aren't enough kids with CHD being born and requiring surgery to keep 11 fully staffed and operational centres going.

the numbers work out at 6 or 7 around the country to make the practices as safe (and sustainable) as possible

that means surgery is going to have to move from 4 or 5 centres, if we want the best practices.

Why am I saying this? Partly because I don't duck issues, and partly because I believe that this has to happen (for all the reasons set out in the reams of documents - especially this one http://www.specialisedservices.nhs.uk/library/30/Childrens_Heart_Surgery_in_England___The_Need_For_Change.pdf) for the next generation of kids who will become the next generation of GUCHs.

Its not going to be easy, and the key to this is making sure that the views of parents and patients are taken into account. So as I said, read the documents, make the arguments you want and lets make this work for the unborn generations to come

TTFN

Paul

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