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"Cuts to Mental Health Services will hit the most vulnerable people in Northamptonshire" say Lib Dems

September 15, 2006 8:11 PM

Commenting on the consultation paper issued by the Northamptonshire group of Primary Care Trusts and Northamptonshire Healthcare NHS Trust "Proposals for changes in Mental Health and Learning Disability Services in Northamptonshire" Cllr. Andrew Simpson, Lib Dem Parliamentary spokesperson for Northampton North constituency said

"These proposals result from years of under-funding by Government of the Health Services in Northamptonshire. Any of these cuts in Mental Health Services will hit the most vulnerable people in Northamptonshire. The decision to reduce the services by £2.7million will lead to a poorer provision of services."

The £2.7million of savings is part of a larger £15million of savings identified to be made by the various Northamptonshire health authorities. A further £22million of cuts has yet to be identified. In total the Northamptonshire Health Bodies have to reduce this year's expenditure across the county by £37million.

"This is not what the people of Northampton North or Corby voted for when they returned Labour MPs" added Andrew "People wanted investment in our National Health Service, not cuts."

The proposals in the consultation include;

· permanently closing Orchard, Austin and Broughton Wards,

· withdrawing seven health staff from the Industrial Rehabilitation Workshop

· Closing two of the following five adult mental health units - Moray Lodge, (Duston) Meadhurst, Thorpedale, Skiddaw Walk, (Northampton) 78/123 The Headlands (Kettering)

· Close Windsor (Northampton) and Swans Hill (Corby) day centres for people with learning disabilities

· Reduce the provision of therapy services

· Close Haddon House (Daventry) and Oundle day hospitals

· Reduce capacity in adult community mental health teams.

"Coming at the same time as the cuts by the Conservative run County Council to their Social Services and the closure of their respite centres this is a double whammy hitting the most vulnerable people of the county" said Andrew.

ENDS.

NOTES TO EDITOR:

The consultation by the PCTs and the Health Trusts ends on Friday 29th. September 2006.

Responses should be sent to: Bridget Peet, Head of Communications,

Northampton Primary Care Trust, Highfield, Cliftonville Road, Northampton NN1 5DN. E-mail: bridget.peet@northamptonpct.nhs.uk

The proposals can be found in the Northamptonshire County Council's "smartstore" website in the committee papers section "Healthier Communities Scrutiny Committee" 13th. September 2006 Agenda pages 25 to 44.