The following is a joint statement on behalf of:
- Jo Webster, Chief Officer of NHS Wakefield Clinical Commissioning Group
- Chris Dowse, Chief Officer of NHS North Kirklees Clinical Commissioning Group
- Stephen Eames, Chief Executive of the Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust
The Joint Kirklees and Wakefield Overview and Scrutiny Committee (JOSC) took the decision on 9 October 2013 to refer the proposals to reconfigure hospital services as part of our Clinical Services Strategy to the Secretary of State for Health. This was on the grounds that members of the committee felt there was sufficient doubt that the proposals were in the best interests of local people.
We have learned today (6 March 2014) that Mr Hunt has replied to the JOSC in response to their referral. He supports an initial assessment by the Independent Reconfiguration Panel that the referral is not suitable for full review and the implementation programme should be allowed to proceed.
We very much welcome the Secretary of State’s decision. This means we can now take forward our plans to reorganise hospital services to significantly improve health outcomes for the people of North Kirklees and Wakefield.
We will continue to involve local people and their representatives in developing the new service models. We will also continue to be open and transparent about our plans so that people know when changes will happen and how services will be better for local people.
The reorganisation of hospital services will take place over the next three years and are part of a significant programme of transformation for the local health system, which will lead to more care being available close to people’s homes reducing the need for treatment in hospitals.