The Liberal Democrats exist to build and safeguard a fair, free and open society, in which we seek to balance the fundamental values of liberty, equality and community, and in which no one shall be enslaved by poverty, ignorance or conformity.

Watchdogs for local healthcare

Lib Dem Councillors put a series of searching questions about proposed changes to local Health Service provision when they were outlined at the Annual Meeting of the Fareham and Gosport Clinical Commissioning Groups.

The good news is that there will be healthcare provision at Welborne from an early stage.

But the model for healthcare, at Welborne and across the area, will change radically.

The familiar pattern of visits to GPs, nurses and other professionals at a group practice near your home will be replaced over time by a system which will involve much more telephone and online consultation rather than face-to-face contact.

In some cases patients will have a longer distance to travel to see a doctor or nurse.

Read more details at the CCG website https://www.farehamandgosportccg.nhs.uk

While it makes sense to make more use of the Fareham Community Hospital in Park Gate for consultations, Lib Dems pointed out that many of the people directed there will be elderly or disabled – the very people least able to travel a distance.

We urge that a new effort be made to provide a bus or taxi service to the hospital which will clearly see a big increase in patient numbers. Previous schemes failed because they were poorly publicised.

We believe better efforts must be made to ensure care packages are in place before elderly and frail people are discharged from hospital.

The risks in asking on-call GPs to deal with urgent treatment for people with multiple and long-term problems, without adequate briefing on their long-term condition, need to be addressed.

Safeguards must be put in place to ensure that email or video consultations are not allowed to take the place of examinations in cases where those are necessary.

We are exploring the idea of an additional one off social care tax in the county's share of the council tax and an end to fifteen minute carer visits.

Nationally, Lib Dems are calling for an end to the out-dated division in both funding and treatment between social care and health care.

And we say talk about parity of esteem for mental health locally and nationally should be backed by ring-fenced funding for it.

 

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