Sir Robert Peel Minor Injuries Unit: My submission to the consultation
I have submitted to the consultation on the proposed overnight closing of the Sir Robert Peel Minor Injuries Unit (MIU) in Tamworth as I have received a number of representations from people across my constituency expressing concern at proposals for overnight closure.
The hospital and its wider amenities are important and valued services in our community. Local residents are very attached to them and the medical support they provide. I am particularly keen therefore that the South East Staffordshire and Seisdon Peninsula CCG listens to the concerns of local residents who worry about the effects of the MIU services being reduced.
I recognise that demand for hospital services is changing and that advances in technology are changing the way patients are treated and what local facilities are needed. I also recognise that we must not assume that the National Health Service can never, and will never, change as patient needs and treatments change. However, I believe it is important that local overnight services remain available to residents. Tamworth is a growing town and as the town grows we do need better infrastructure and services and I do think out of hours urgent care facilities in the town is necessary to reduce demand on A & E. This includes ensuring that out of hours minor injuries treatment is available to patients at a reasonable and accessible location.
I must also query the figures provided in the consultation which state that between 9pm and 8am only one patient is visiting the MIU service every two hours. Constituents who have written to me on this matter present a very different picture, and I cannot help but wonder how this figure is calculated, and how visitors the MIU are spread throughout the night, and through the week. Are particular nights consistently busier than others? Having spoken with clinicians and executives from the Burton NHS Hospitals Foundation Trust, can they confirm that the statistics used are more reflective of the experience of the Samuel Johnson hospital and skew the real picture at Sir Robert Peel? Furthermore, given the Keogh Report made clear that Tamworth needs urgent care facilities around the clock – which I believe would require such facilities as GP availability which is a greater service level than currently available – it would appear strange therefore to reduce MIU facilities.
I am pleased that day case surgery and theatre are continuing and new staff are being recruited. I was also pleased to see the latest report from the Care Quality Commission recommending that the Burton Hospitals Trust exits special measures and rating the Sir Robert Peel Hospital as "Good" overall. This heralds a vote of confidence in the community hospital and I would like to see this success built upon. Congratulations to all staff concerned at the Sir Robert Peel hospital.